Agnostic.com

127 15

Are atheist as racist as religious people?

In my life I have found that more prejudice and racism has come from Christian people. Ironically I was told to not be "unequally yoked together with non-believers." Well, those are the very people who treated me as an equal human being.

Thoughts?

By Rideauxb7
Actions Follow Post Like

Post a comment Add Source Add Photo

Enjoy being online again!

Welcome to the community of good people who base their values on evidence and appreciate civil discourse - the social network you will enjoy.

Create your free account

127 comments

Feel free to reply to any comment by clicking the "Reply" button.

10

Yes. Here is the thing about atheism I think people don't get. Being an atheist is one aspect, a single, individual part of who I am. I lack belief in a God. That could very well be the only accepted commonality I share with another atheist. Atheism isn't a worldview it a single statement. I lack a belief in God. My other point is we are all racist. Racism is a matter of degrees. How racist are you? Example If I see a middle eastern Muslim person walking down the street, I am less comfortable than when I look at an Asian person or African American person walking down the street. And I am even more relaxed when it's a person of my race walking down the road. To me, I see that as my level of racism. I'm more comfortable when I recognize an individual who I identify as similar to me.

paul1967 Level 8 Oct 6, 2017
5

My experience is that yes, religious people do seem to be more prejudiced than atheists. They are more racist, more homophobic, more likely to be misogynists or xenophobic. Having been taught the Christian doctrine, I think it is because the bible teaches fear and hate of those unlike ourselves. Slavery was acceptable, murder was acceptable, being gay was unacceptable--an abomination and women were definitely second class citizens, etc. I think this is because when the bible was written people were fearful of those differences and they didn't understand the science behind it. People who read the bible and believe it is the actual word of god must believe what is written there.

Atheists, on the other hand, are science oriented, logical, analytical and critical thinkers. They are more likely to be educated AND we don't have a book telling us how to live and hate. We are free to love and support all people.

On a personal level, I was raised by all four parents to be a Christian and to be a racist. I bought it lock stock and barrel. Then I got out into the working world and began to realize that my parents (one was and is a born again Christian) were wrong, very, very wrong. I was ashamed but I changed and I raised by daughters not to judge and not to hate and not to fear people who were different. They are wonderful daughters and they are raising wonderful, loving children. I believe there is hope and I believe that it starts with preventing religious dogma from being taught to our children and thereby releasing its hold on our children and our future.

KLMFTFW Level 5 Oct 6, 2017
2

Religious people in my experiences, usually tend to be racist. But through my experiences I've been assaulted, robbed, had my property stolen and vandalized by African Americans, so it's very hard to have a positive attitude when you've had traumatic and life changing negative experiences from one race only. I was young and just starting out and lived in a neighborhood inhabited by African American, Asian, and Latino families but the two years I lived there I never had any problems with the latter two. It wasn't because I was white, all three races were victims,I had never lived around African Americans before and haven't since and I've been crime free for 40 years. I know a few bad apples,I also know once bitten twice shy.

8

I don't believe we are as prejudiced as religious people. Considering we don't believe all the bullshit in the bible about how we should hate everyone who is different...

15

I believe the open minded free thinker that atheists typically are, generally makes them less likely to be racist. Every racist I know is very close minded.

Feralkat2 Level 4 Oct 6, 2017
3

I would hope not, but don't know that many atheists. I do live in a more secular community and we're all liberals. Can't imagine atheists being bigots because logic and reason tell us that you cannot rationally judge a "race". You have to take people one on one. Also, being an atheist from a roman catholic family, you learn what discrimination is very early and I try not to inflict that kind of stress on others simply because of their race or sexual orientation.

5

Well, minorities tend to be more broad-minded than majorities - and atheists are in minority almost everywhere in the world. In my experience, people who have just become atheists usually hold a lot of rancor toward religion and will often discriminate openly against those that have strong religious beliefs. With time, the rancor goes and acceptation of other people's way of life, as being an atheist is morally much harder than being religious, as you are your own judge, you have to make your own moral choices and you have to confront mortality as an end, not a beginning.

MarcO Level 5 Oct 6, 2017

I like your thoughtful comments, but atheists are certainly not in minority where I grew up and where I live now. Unlike most members here, I was almost forced to be an atheist while growing up. I think having no freedom of religion is just as bad as being brainwashed by religion, if not worse. Luckily I've never been really religious or an atheist.

3

Absolutely not.....At least for me we're not. I believe in equal rites for all humans except for morons like Trump that is.....

Uncika Level 1 Oct 6, 2017
2

No. People who have considered religion from a critical point of view have almost certainly used a rational thought process about people of other races.

3

Racism/Tribalism is actually part of the Holy Books. Israel was God's chosen people, and as a result, gentiles were shunned, or even considered abhorrent. In the days of Joshua Israel went into Canaan and slaughtered just about everybody. In the days of Jesus, it was the Samaritans... the Greeks... the Romans.

As Christianity grew, shepherded by Saul, a.k.a. Paul the anti-Semite, it was the Jews. And so it goes down the ages.

Racism has always existed, but religion blessed and sanctified it, while giving cover to those who wish to continue on.

4

I personally don't think racism has as much to do with any religion as much as it does ignorance. As the base of religion requires faith and belief, those raised in it are ignorant from lack of teaching and exposure. Those who come to religion later in life to me, seem to have issues with self importance, righteousness and narcissism. Add into that the ages old practice of religious leaders promoting the ignorance, seclusion, and "enemy mind set" of any being, activity or appreciation outside the faith you have a storm of close mindedness and prejudice.

Racism is just ONE of the many things the good faithful don't have any idea they are. propagating.

Recent events in the US, the emboldened make America great again mind set has thankfully taught me I am far less racist/prejudice than I thought I might be.

That being said I think there will always be inequality. It is a downfall of mankind that where there is room for a preference, there is room for a non preferred, that non preferred takes a backseat. Be it male/female blonde/brunette sunshine/moonlight.

5

You'll find racists, and otherwise shitty people, in all religious groups and walks of life, unfortunately. We all just do our best to keep those people out of our lives. (Well, I do anyway).

Dylan Level 5 Oct 7, 2017
4

I don't think you have to be religious to find reasons to hate other people. People can hate you for being left handed while some will hate you for being ambidextrous. People gonna hate for whatever reason.

SamL Level 7 Oct 8, 2017
3

I have found that most atheists are kind, charitable, less judgemental, and are mostly guided by the Golden Rule. So no, I think they are less racist.

dinghram Level 2 Oct 8, 2017
5

Most of my closest friends are either atheist or agnostic, and well over half of them are involved in interracial marriage where one spouse is Asian and one spouse is of European descent.

BD66 Level 7 Oct 8, 2017
13

I don't doubt that some racist Atheists, but at least they are not hiding behind the bible. I think the non-believers (Atheists, Agonistics, Humanists, ,,,,) would be less inclined to be racist or prejudiced. In the US we are a marginalized group and, as such, would have experienced prejudice and would be more cognizant of prejudice and bias.

CS60 Level 7 Oct 9, 2017
2

Obviously Atheists have the same possibility to be racist, racism is more to do with outside influences, so as both will get the same influences, then it stands to reason they will be the same.

Being atheist doesn't automatically make someone more enlightened.

agreed its not automatic, but there is a general norm. i find most atheist have educated themselves out of poor standards of faith and belief. so by default have a better informed stance on most topics. related to religion and the sciences. science shows us that we are all the same species, that this race thing is nothing more than a bias towards other people based on skin color or culture.

@MichaelSpinler this race thing is about keeping the masses divided so the oligarchy can control them, there is only one race on this planet, the Human Race.

3

I think there are good and bad in every race, every belief --- every division of humanity.

what do you think a race is? i think you are confusing culture and skin color for a race. we are the human race, all the same species.

athiest peoples are justas racistas non-athiest.

i don't think we are talking about whether people are good are bad. i care not to discuss racism w/most folks especially caucasians because it's simply futile. the issue does not need to be discussed unless there is some agreed understanding of what it is, how it expresses itself, etc. sooo, cannot continue. i, me, people who look like me did not create the shish, thus, we cannot change it and i will not stress myself trying to get people who don't want to not be to discuss. it's futile and meaningless.

7

Religious people tend to need a crutch and often use religion to attack others when they feel weak. Many religious people (not all) fear atheism and resent our logic and confidence-so yes- if you live in fear then you are more likely to be racist.

4

Hypocrisy is the norm with religion — non-believers seem to be more open minded in general across all subjects in my experience

JayMan1 Level 4 Oct 15, 2017
0

Atheists lack a belief in a god or gods. That's it.
After that, all bets are off. Atheists can be any combination of things even racists, we just can't be theists at the same time.

Paul628 Level 8 Oct 16, 2017
4

People are people. All can be and are racists. However, religious people are told to be racist as a way to gain immortality. I feel most racism is based on some sort of dogma.

@JackPedigo's You are onto something here; religious people tend to be far more authoritarian than non-believers. It is that ability to believe what they are told that leads to them being far more likely to be racist not the religion itself. Fundamentally racist dogma is not that different than religious dogma the ability to swallow one set of lies without question is the same ability to swallow another set without question.

Can you tell me if the bible actually supports racism or condemns interracial marriage?

@Beelzebub For one thing slavery is a form of racism. The bible is full of it.

3

I think without the entitlement of religion, racism doesn't have as firm a hold. There are of course notable exceptions. The typical racist's argument is god intended them to be the superior race.

11

My feeling is that the average atheist is less racist as the average theist.

3

I'm not sure there is a real correlation here. I have met many racist assholes of both theist and atheist leanings. The simple fact is that everyone has their own racial biases built in. No one is the perfect "anti-racist" ideal.

most atheist accept evolution, which demonstrates there is only one race, human. i have found very few atheist over the years that were racist because of this education.

Write Comment
You can include a link to this post in your posts and comments by including the text 'q:807'.
Agnostic does not evaluate or guarantee the accuracy of any content read full disclaimer.
  • Agnostic.com is a non-profit community for atheists, agnostics, humanists, freethinkers, skeptics and others!