Here’s your Canadian Atheist Weekly Update for to .
About a month ago, David Speed and Melanie Brewster published a new study in Secularism & Nonreligion where they asked people in a bunch of different religious groups how they felt about other religious groups. (Note: this is all American data.) This kind of thing had been done before, but Speed and Brewster had a specific goal: atheists are the most hated “religious” group in the US, and the most commonly given excuse for that is, well, atheists hate religious people, so it’s only natural that the hate is reciprocated, and there are just a lot more religious people than atheists, so atheists end up being the most hated. Well, what Speed and Brewster discovered was: that’s all bullshit. Atheists do not hate other groups… in fact, atheists feel roughly the same about Christians and other atheists. Meanwhile, Christians really like other Christians, but hate atheists. I’ve chosen to highlight this chart put together by Ryan Burge, which pretty graphically backs up Speed and Brewster’s findings. It clearly shows that Christians really like other Christians… and hate atheists… but all the groups are pretty well bunched together for the Nones on the positive side, meaning Nones pretty much like everyone equally, regardless of their faith. (Note that unlike Speed and Brewster, Burge seems to be using Nones, not atheists, as the “atheist” group, and Nones are not all atheists. Nones appear to like Muslims the least, but not by much, and even then, they’re still on the positive side.)
A couple people asked me if I’d forgotten to follow up on the Sye Ten Bruggencate story; the answer is no, I hadn’t forgotten… it’s just that getting details about the story has been like pulling teeth. Hemant Mehta of The Friendly Atheist seems just as confused as I am about what is going on. As near as I can tell (to be clear, this is my speculation, not Mehta’s), whatever “sin” Bruggencate committed it doesn’t seem like it’s anything our atheist readers would care much about. There were early insinuations that a minor might have been involved, or someone who was in a particularly vulnerable situation, or something like that—something that might have warranted police intervention—but that now doesn’t appear to be the case. All the kerfuffle now just looks inside church crap that doesn’t really matter to anyone else. If I get more information, I’ll report it, but at the moment it’s probably best if Bruggencate just fades back into relative obscurity.
As more mass graves of indigenous children who died after being forcibly taken from their families and had Jesus beaten into them in residential schools run by the Catholic Church, it’s important to remember who the realvictim here is: the Catholic Church. No, seriously, that’s what Archbishop Richard Gagnon—the president of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops—believes. And he’s not alone; the past few weeks have seen a flood of opinion pieces trying to divert blame for the atrocities that occurred in residential schools from the Catholic Church, or the Pope specifically (to excuse why he hasn’t apologized yet). The attempts are all pretty sad and pathetic, and they serve mostly to really highlight the complete moral bankruptcy within Catholicism.
It’s the same old dance: The Catholic Church is discovered to have committed yet another atrocity, so we get to witness the hand-wringing by Catholics—“maybe this is the atrocity that we should leave the Catholic Church over?”—and the evergreen opinion piece: “It’s finally time to end the separate school system”. Honestly, if I were a journalist, I’d just write a piece that went: “With the recent discovery of _____, it appears it’s finally time to put an end to the publicly funded Catholic school system….” Then I could fill in the blank when the next atrocity comes around. I think most decent human beings are just about fed up with this pearl-clutching by Catholics still in the Church: if you didn’t care enough about children being raped to leave… and if you don’t care enough now about children being murdered to leave… if the homophobia, racism, sexism, and now genocide wasn’t enough to make you leave… then just fucking stay; you might as well stop even trying to pretend you’re a decent human being, because you’re not fooling anyone. But as for the separate school systems, we’re just waiting on a politician with a backbone—which, granted, we may be waiting a while—because the abolition of the publicly-funded, discriminatory, religious school systems is inevitable at this point.
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