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Why are some atheists angry?

I know some of you will answer, "because religions turn people into dicks", I paraphrase and boil it down to a general colloquial type response.

Richard Dawkins is the poster boy for the angry atheist. Why? Probably because he is like most of us and has discovered with compounded evidence that it is stupid to believe in a crazy god, in the case of the Old Testament's JEHOVAH and the whacked GOD THE FATHER who killed his own SON. To be honest, I don't believe Jesus ever existed.

I'm not looking to bother Christians and they've learned, in short order, not to evangelize me, therefore, I am not angry at them except when they VOTE, otherwise, we get along royal because they know I am a righteous "pagan" and consigned to the First Circle of Dante's Hell.

No anger is always appreciated by everyone. If a Christian is angry at you, don't feed them. If we get angry, we are just like the anger thrown at us. In this, I am a "better" Christian than a Christian asshole.

rabbibubba 5 Dec 26

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1

I do not feel angry, the religious might be angry with us because we accept what is real provable and coherent.

23

Don't confuse anger with an assertive, confident and questioning attitude to religious practices and beliefs. I don't accept your characterisation of Richard Dawkins. All movements need change agents, those who lead the charge, take on orthodoxy and take the blows because of that. The media stereotype him that way because mainstream media are part of the establishment structure that supports religion. Religion is good, religion gives people something to believe in. Controversial figures are neutralised.

I agree. Dawkins is very analytical and speaks logically. He only sounds abrasive because he's not deliberating how what he says might be offensive he just succinctly describes how ignorant it is to believe certain things in light of what we know i.e. creationism over evolution. Now the truly angry atheist archetype would have to go to Christopher Hitchens. An evangelist said to him "Christopher, I don't consider you my enemy" to which Hitchens responded "damn either you don't know what the enemy looks like or I'm not doing my job." Paraphrased but certainly an accurate example of Hitchens's core antitheist position.

I have seen some clips of Dawkins expressing unmistakable anger at the nebulous concept of "religion", and vehemently calling for its utter destruction. He and Hitchens were religious ideologues, not just citizens without belief. And the other horsemen ride not too far behind. @SocraticAddict

Let's not assume that anger is always a bad thing. There are things in the world we should be angry about. Aspects of religion should make us angry. Ask someone who was sexually abused in a religion whether they are angry about it. They have every right to be.

I don't see anger here, but strong opinions and views amongst (mostly) similarly minded people who share a 21st Century more robust attitude towards religion, in contrast to the often deferential 20th Century attitude towards religions which did nothing to ameliorate the rise of religious based terrorism, religious fundamentalism, and gross abuses by churches and their hierarchy.

Of course there is such a thing as righteous anger, but there is also such a thing as misdirected anger. When the wrong culprit is targeted the guilty go free. Dawkins is brilliant, and right about most of his complaints, but his target is too broad to be effective. He’s trying to indict an evolutionary adaptation for the sins of common ignorance, and he should know better. It is his anger that obscures his view. @David1955

@David1955 You said it right, here “Aspects of religion should make us angry.” Yes, aspects of religious behavior, fueled by ignorance and cultural drift, but not the larger umbrella of “religion” as Dawkins constantly says.

@skado. I disagree, I have seen Dawkins speak and seen the hatred spewed at him from religious people in the audience. I do not think his target s too broad, I think many religion should stay out of schools and away from sciences. I cannot imagine his frustration with Religion trying to suppress biological evidence. Personally I HATE religion, but I am not angry.

@Teresa Your right. Dawkins goes beyond boundaries that atheists didn't go in the past, like religion in schools, and bringing up children as a Catholic child, or Protestant Child, or whatever, and he's right to do so, and they, religionists, don't like it. Too bad. A great many, like me, agree with him.

19

Yeeesh, if you think religion is an innocent thing with which we should all calmly coexist, I am a little shocked. All throughout history, the major abrahamic religions tore through cultures to destroy everything that was not "kosher" (no offense). They burned people, libraries, priceless works of art, scientists were tortured, and every single thing in the name of progress pissed them off. Problem is that this behavior is still happening in developed countries! In Russia, if you "upset the feelings of a christian" you can get up to 5 years in prison. There were some boys who played the one Pokemon game in a church and we're tried for blasphemy. If you get the chance, watch the movie Agora, it's a wonderful movie (based on a true story) about how religion seeps into a culture and destroys it from the inside.

Rabbibubba, when you open a reply with "Young woman," your condescension oozes obnoxiousness. Jenwinter made some good points, and you simply pulled the ol' age-ism ploy to claim to invalidate her. Also, how do you presume to know what she does or "will ever" know? You can't with any validity. Bad move on your part.

Obviously "<i>somebody</i>" here is expressing anger with elitist passive-aggressive smug snobbery. Maybe he needs a diaper change.

@SKDeitch I was going to say I missed something

18

My being angry has less to do with me being an atheist, and more to do with the fact that I don't like stupid people.

12

I don’t think it is angry per say, to some degree, but if some atheists are angry, I reckon it is probably because atheist for so long has been dehumanized. Atheist are the least trusted and to make matters worse, we are expected to believe in an insane God, who could not have possibly be the ruler of our Universe. Religion really is an ugly thing and for so long, they’ve forced their rules on people.

11

Dawkins may be assertive in condemning religion but every time I have watched him he has been very courteous to the religious. One of his best videos is where he reads letters from the religious written to him in the vilest language possible and makes lite of it. It appears that you are saying to make arguments against ridiculous superstition but don't get angry at the person making the argument. From my observation of Richard Dawkins, that is exactly what he does.

gearl Level 7 Dec 27, 2017

Thanks for saying that. Quite right. Dawkins gives measure for measure, but it's the arguments he attacks, not people. I've watched him in the world, not in formal debates, talking to everyday people (for want of a better word) and he's unfailingly polite, if they are not used to a camera, even if they are talking twaddle. But in formal debates, with credentialed people spinning garbage, he calls them out on point, and rightly so.

10

"There’s simply no polite way to tell people they’ve dedicated their lives to an illusion." I actually have pity for those trapped in religion. I only get angry when they try to translate their bad ideas into actions that negatively impact others. If you're going to pass legislation that requires people do or not do something, it needs to be based on verifiable, objective truths. I support mandatory vaccination, for example, but vehemently oppose bans on homosexual marriage.

10

For various reasons, and it can also depend on where one lives. The bible belt, for example, is a hostile place to live for atheists. In some countries, it can be quite dangerous and deadly to be an atheist. I also think many people equate civil rights activism, education about the harm authoritarian religion causes, and debate in a negative light.

There appears to be a lack of awareness by some about what atheists experience in their everyday lives in religious communities, just because it's not happening to them.

9

If some atheists are angry, and some angry people are Christians does that mean that some atheists are Christians?

lerlo Level 8 Dec 27, 2017

????that’s awesome

Lol no it's means that they're human. (snark intended)

@Nickdavison The real answer is just "no" but thanks for playing our game, lovely parting gifts. Last I checked everyone has the right to be angry--seemed like a dumb question so I added one of my own.

No, it means some angry people are atheists, and some angry people are religionists, but they are not the same people. 'Tis logical, Captain.

9

Sorry dude, IMHO your take on Dawkins is off. Maybe you're projecting; don't know. But his determination to stand for truth will always be interpreted as aggression by the defenders of religion who see any disagreement as attack.

7

I do not believe that Richard Dawkins is an angry Atheist. He is a confident assertive individual who when provoked (usually rudely) responds in kind.

He is a biologist, he is logical, he is passionate. And he often says he is a militant atheist. He talks often about how biology is under attack by creationism.

I think people ( like us) who are not on the front lines of forcing change into the minds of people are never attacked the way he is are never shoved into the media and forced to put up with the attacks he endures.

I saw him speak once and I was amazed at how rudely religious people in the crowd ( and yes they came) asked questions.

There is a good video to watch: [ted.com]

7

We should be angry, atheist or not, when religion (or any ideology) is used as an excuse to abuse and mistreat people. Please let me know if you need examples.

7

I know I am angry, because for all of my childhood, I was subjected to forced indoctrination, and I have so few real happy memories of childhood. I am very resentful and angry about that... Although I keep it all in check most of the time.

6

Not going to speak of others and generalize but what I feel to fit the so called "angry atheist" term is due to being sick and tired of seeing religious posts, billboards, references, overtones, undertones, hidden messages in conversations relating to some sort of religious crap, seeing over and over again when someone is sick to pray but they forget about the doctors & ER nurses who had a real hand in the matter, government trying to weasel their way into our lives with religion, need I go on about this but you get the point. That's what I think some of us are tired of dealing with on a daily basis. It's frustrating, aggravating to say the least.

6

It is in the individual's personality, not in the lack of religious belief.

5

When I first came out as an atheist last December, I was angry. That is gone now. Now it's just comical to read about the devout Christians.

4

I am angry because conservative so-called "religious" people are using their fake christianity to manipulate and control the rest of us.

Mostly of course in the political arena. I try not to get angry so much as more logical and very pedantic.

3

Anger is an appropriate emotional response to danger. We feel angered by religion because we see the danger it presents. The trick is to channel that anger productively rather than letting it make you act a fool.

3

I wouldn't be inclined to anger, since it's a waste of energy, but when the righteous pricks start telling me I have to believe their bullshit or celebrate their holidays or have my school calendar revolve around theirs, then I'm inclined to get irritated

3

Hey, you want to see irrational anger at its best? Run into a Catholic Church. Run right up to the nearest crucifix (the larger the better) and pretend to be tickling its nipples!

3

When you feel righteous, everyone else is an peon that should listen to you. To brake this horrible cycle, simply admit that you are human.

No need to break any cycle if I am in fact both much smarter AND much more well-versed on a given subject. Some people are indeed simpletons with an opinion who need to be called out and shut down.

3

I don't get angry-thats wasted energy. Walk away.

2

Is this a trick question 😉 -- Let’s see… how about a lifetime of religious persecution? Or religious persecution throughout the bulk of recorded human history? Societal ostracization? Political exclusion? Sub-minority status? Or knowing others are being jailed or murdered for their honesty…? Yes, I’d say anger’s justifiable 😀

Varn Level 8 Dec 31, 2017
2

Because in order for religion to get people to maintain their beliefs, they MUST try to stop people from questioning and to continue to indoctrinate and proselytize. If they don't try to enter the public sphere and influence politics, on who we can marry, what we can teach, I wouldn't care - any more than I care if you believe in palm reading or astrology.

Geoff Level 5 Dec 29, 2017
2

I have noticed people here in the community that are angry at christians. They constantly post about "why christians do this" and "why christians say this". I am like, Let It Go! I couldnt imagine walking around with that much anger inside. its like a waste of energy. why not focus on other things that are positive. How can a person refer to themselves as open minded and a free thinker if they have such contempt for another person because their beliefs are different.

We have to pick our battles, to be sure. I happen to love the general festiveness of Christmas. I can see some legitimately having overbearing religiosity about Christmas in a preachy way spoil,the fun for them. To each their own.

2

The question of "angry at religion" gets interpreted different ways. I've have my share of Christian proselytizers jump to the conclusion that I'm "angry at God." Nothing could be further from the truth. How can I be angry at something that doesn't exist? What I do get angry at is social injustice and hurtful oppression and coercion of people. And guess what! Religion is arguably the number social tool used to try to control people; not only people, but laws, public opinion, and unwritten social rules. Anger is a valid emotion. It is also a motivator to spur people to action against destructive forces. Yay Anger!

"...arguably the number ONE...," that is. I can't seem to get away from typos. :/

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