If there is one thing I’ve learned from people, it’s that having an opinion is a bad thing. It’s even worse if you have a strong opinion. The stronger the opinion, the worse it is. Apathy is what’s cool. Not giving a shit is what’s cool. Hey man, it’s all good, relax, just go with the flow, why bother? Fuck that and fuck you. Go ahead, float through life without a care in the world, just take whatever injustice comes your way lying down. You can’t be bothered to care. As long as you’re entertained you’re happy, no matter what they do to you or your rights. Well guess what buddy, you sir are a slave to people who do care. It is people who actually give a fuck and will get off their ass that control the world. If you don’t mind people fucking you over, then don’t complain. You disgust me.
I recently finished up a discussion based course where we would hear a lecture, read some articles, and then try and tie it all together in short papers. After this the class would get together and have a discussion on the topic. Maybe I’m just paranoid, but the entire time I felt like everyone just wanted me to shut the hell up. I didn’t talk all the time, but when I did, I felt like everyone just rolled their eyes and wished I would just go sit in the corner. “Oh shut up you stupid liberal Atheist, nobody gives a shit about what you have to say!” For some reason all my ideas are crazy, but nobody can explain to me why they’re crazy. I feel like they just don’t want to tolerate me, like I’m “that guy.” I don’t want to be “that guy”! I know plenty of creepy crazy guys around campus and I try to avoid them like the plague. I think I can take social cues as when something is inappropriate, or when people aren’t interested. Those guys seem to be obsessed with themselves and can never understand why people don’t like them. They’re crazy and hover around people. I just don’t understand why people never want to take my ideas seriously. Did I miss a memo or something?
In 17 days I will be graduating with my Bachelor’s degree in History. I’m starting to have second thoughts about everything. What have I learned in four years? Well, not much. I know a bit more about history than I did when I graduated high school, but that’s not saying much since I was obsessed with the subject back then. I already knew a lot compared to other students going in. I guess I’ve learned how to write papers. That’s pretty much it. I’ve learned how to research and write. Is that worth $35,000 a year for 4 years? I’m not sure.
I’ve had an interesting experience. I’ve meet some great people, expanded my views on a lot of things, and got to experiment with new interests. But that’s not what I’m worried about. The social and life experiences were great, I’m just worried about what I know academically. I don’t feel like I deserve a Bachelor’s degree. Yeah, I’ve worked hard over these past 4 years, not going to parties, pulling all nighters on papers, traveling for history conferences, etc, but I don’t feel like I know enough to be given a B.A. I’m worried that everyone else knows more than me in their fields and that I’m still the same as when I graduated high school. I feel like I’m just pretending, and that some day it’s all going to catch up to me and I’ll be exposed for my lack of knowledge. :-(
Sometimes people will try and claim Atheism is a religion during a debate in an attempt to discredit it or move the burden of proof. It also comes of as “See, you’re no better than me!” which is not very flattering to your own cause. Besides the fact that Atheism is as much a religion as “off” is a TV channel, this line of reasoning has some implications that the person using it would not enjoy.
IF Atheism was a religion, then it would be subject to all the same privileges Christianity enjoys. Atheists could build tax-exempt houses of un-worship. All our Atheism related transactions would be tax-exempt. Atheists could get off work and out of school for Atheist holidays. If Atheism was a religion, we could able to demand that people stop attacking out tenants, we could put non-bibles in every hotel room, we’d have politicians begging us and pandering to us for our votes, we’d have statues erected to Atheism, we could even have an un-sabbath. As a religion we could demand unconditional respect be given to us based on our lack of faith. Basically, if Atheism was a religion we would be entitled to every kickback other religions get. The person saying “Well you’re a religion too!” never takes this into account. They just want us to have all the negative stuff that goes with being a religion, without any of the societal privileges.
Just the other day the creators of South Park got death threats from a group of Muslims called “Revolution Muslim” because one of the characters in an episode was supposedly the prophet Muhammad in a bear suit. (It actually turned out to be Santa. Comedy Central freaked out and caved under the death threats, censoring the episode and not uploading it to their website like every other South Park episode in history. They even censored the final speech given by one of the characters against hate and violence.
Revolution Muslim is a group based in New York City, in the shadow of ground zero. Our laws protect their insane speech, as they should, but then they make death threats and our media caves. Revolution Muslim,
GO FUCK YOURSELVES
Now we see if they send me death threats…. ~_^
Arizona’s republican Gov. Jan Brewer just signed a bill allowing Arizona police officers to demand immigration papers for anyone they suspect of being an illegal.
The Govenor says she won’t tolerate racial profiling, but tell me, how do you expect this to go? Who are the illegal immigrants? They’re Hispanics from south of the border. Say police pull over John Doe, a white man, for speeding. Are they going to bother to ask him for his immigration papers or proof of citizenship? No! Of Course not! Why would they? He’s white! White people don’t come from south of the border, so he can’t be an illegal.
Now take the same situation, but instead of a white guy, say the cops pull over a Latino for speeding. Ut-oh, he’s the same ethnicity as all those illegals coming in from south of the border. Are they going to ask him for his papers? YES! There is no possible way that this will NOT turn into racial profiling. In effect, the republican governor is saying that an entire ethnicity must carry identification papers with them at all times. Gee… Where else in history has an entire ethnicity been forced to carry identification papers at all times?
Thank you Arizona republicans, you’ve just handed over the fastest growing population in America to the Democrats.
Liberty and Freedom are worthless words. The ideas those words used to represent are still invaluable, but we no longer have words to represent those concepts.
In George Orwell’s 1984 there is the important concept of “double speak“. Double speak is the deliberate distortion of language in the hopes of making meaningful discussion impossible. Controlling language, just like controlling history, is an extremely powerful weapon. If you can debase and alter the very language of a debate, you can frame it any way you want. Your opponents will become victims of their own language.
We see this happening in America today. In the past, conservatives successfully altered the connotation of the word liberal. They turned it into something dirty, a crime, a perversion. What did liberals do? They cowered and switched to progressive. Now the right is hammering away at progressive as hard as they did liberal to try and make that a dirty word too.
Liberty & Freedom have fallen victim to the same war. What do those words mean? I don’t know what they mean now. I see them constantly being used by people who would, if elected, severely restrict who could marry who, what women could do with their bodies, where women and blacks could work and go to school, who could serve in the military, what religion the government would favor, who could enter this country in search of a better life. The people using the words Liberty & Freedom would make a lot of decisions controlling the actions and choices of other people. Is that what Liberty & Freedom mean?
There was a time when those words, like liberal and progressive meant something different. There was a time when Liberty & Freedom meant the lack of control. Liberty and Freedom were words feared by people who sought to coerce and control others. People uttering those words were to be quickly and mercilessly put down by the authorities.
Now those who would take away people’s ability to do what they please use these words to describe their cause. Liberty & Freedom are now worthless words.
When Republicans use sexism to go after Democratic women, there are varying degrees of subtly. Late last year, for example, the National Republican Congressional Committee suggested House Speaker Nancy Pelosi should be “put her in her place” for disagreeing with an Army general about Afghanistan policy. The subtext seemed pretty obvious.
But in northeast Ohio this week, the Republican Executive Committee in Medina County dropped the pretense altogether while going after Rep. Betty Sutton (D).
A recent Medina GOP mailer that urges voters to “take Betty Sutton out of the House and put her back in the kitchen,” has angered the Emily’s List political action committee, which raises money for female Democratic candidates.
“They’re set on defeating Cong. Betty Sutton (OH-13), whom we helped elect in 2006, and filling her spot with a conservative loyalist. And how will they go about doing that? By sending her right where they think she (and all women) belong: the kitchen,” says a posting on the group’s website, which links to a fundraising page for Sutton. “I wish I could say I were shocked, but I can’t. I can, however, say I’m appalled, annoyed, and ready to do something about it.”
It’s not just Emily’s List that finds this offensive. It’s the 21st century, for crying out loud. For Republicans to still talk about forcing women “back in the kitchen” should be insulting to anyone who takes equality seriously.
For the record, Betty Sutton is an accomplished lawmaker and respected attorney — and does not have a background as a professional chef. In other words, there’s nothing about the congresswoman’s background that makes “back in the kitchen” appropriate. The Republicans’ rhetoric seems predicated entirely on gender.
Medina County GOP Chairman Bill Heck said the mailing was sent to roughly 15,000 Republican households in Ohio, and he “had not received any complaints.”
He might think that makes this better. It actually makes it worse — why don’t those GOP households have a problem with this blatant misogyny?
The sick thing is that nobody is going to raise a stink over this. The republicans can say the most insane shit and it’s normal. Undo a century of progress for women’s rights? Sure. I just can’t understand for the life of me why conservative women exist. Brainwashing from childhood is the only answer that sounds plausible. I mean, seriously, how can you be part of a party that wants to force you into servitude? A party that, if they had their way, would make you nothing more than an incubator for men’s babies. You would have no control over your body, you’d have to have as many children as your husband wanted, and you’d be stuck in the house cleaning up after his mess. Have some fucking self respect.
You have to be delusional to think that republicans have your best interests at heart as an average American. All politicians are corrupt, but they take the cake! At the same time Goldman-Sachs is charged with fraud and the democrats are trying to push through a financial reform bill to control the banks that destroyed our economy, the republican top leadership marches down to Wallstreet to meet with the very people who caused the crash.
Seriously? Having secret conversations to ask for directions from the corporations is bad enough, but physically walking down there to pay homage to your masters?
Look, it’s no secret that republicans for the longest time have been in the pocket of big business. They are the rich man’s party, the defenders of the status quo. As long as the status quo supports rich white men, they will fight to protect it. How do they get the poor average American to vote for them then? Religion. They wrap themselves in it and claim to be the party of “family values” and morality. The poor average Joe joins up out of gullibleness thinking he’s supporting the party of decency, then they screw him and blame the democrats. It’s all very cynical and calculated.
The republican leadership cries Obama isn’t being bipartisan. That’s bullshit on a stick. Obama and the democrats have bent over backwards time and time again trying to reach out to the republicans, and EVERY time they spit in their faces. The democrats have reached out so much, compromised so much, that it’s severely pissed off their base. The whole time they’re looking like fools because the joke’s on them.
You see, what they don’t understand is that it’s all part of a carefully crafted republican plan. Become the party of NO! and say NO! to everything no matter how good it might be. This way the democrats, who are pussies, will give and give and give until their bills truly are shit. Then the republicans will let it pass. When the worst happens because the bill is shit, the republicans will blame the democrats for passing it. They are doing it on purpose. Fuck the average working man, the party’s never really cared about them. They can easily be kept in line with their religion and fear tactics. Just conjure up some bullshit about that n***** president coming to kill you and they’ll froth at the mouth. The money is what’s important, so as long as we’re on our knees servicing Wallstreet, everything is ok.
So living in Lynchburg Virginia, home of “9/11 is god’s punishment ” Jerry Falwell and his penitentiary of brainwashing and bullshit, “Liberty” “university”, religious stuff is all over town. Every other car either has a LU sticker, the christian fish magnet, or “Not I, but Christ” sticker. The local stores are also almost entirely owned by the LU octopus. Falwall and his ilk even have their own section in walmart that sells only LU gear, along with religious books.
So as a way to stay sane and get some cheap thrills, I engage in a little Atheist resistance. First up is my car. When you’re stopped at a red light, that’s your 30 second chance to get a message out to the three cars behind you. (Assuming you’re in the middle lane)
I love these things. I change them out every so often, depending on what’s pissing me off that week. Sometimes it’s political, like pro-choice signs (which are a real hit in the area ~_^), but most of the time it’s religious. Currently I’m blasting the catholic church for their 2000 yr + child pedophilia scandal.
I figure the “liberty” kids in Lynchburg are constantly confined to their nice little clean bubble of rich, white, conservative christian fanatics, it’d be nice to jar them out of their comfort zone and make them realize they’re not the only game in town. If I have to sit in traffic and put up with their stupid signs, they can suffer my 1st amendment rights to mine. Yeah, some could argue that it might look a little trashy, but if nobody stands up and says something, they’ll think that everyone is just like them, and thus their beliefs will be all the further reinforced.
Secondly is pamphlets. In Lynchburg there are pamphlets all around. The LU kids stuff them inside beer cases, leave them in shops, in mailboxes, on dining tables, under your windshield wipers, everywhere. I’ve put a few of them up here on my blog, and they all say the same thing: You’re a rotten person that’s going to burn in hell forever unless you buy our product. So I decided to make my own. Here is one that I’m currently circulating:
I can’t make the picture any bigger, so incase you can’t read it, the outside when you first open it just says something like “Hey, you’re ok the way you are, you’re not a sinner, nor are you damned to some eternal punishment.” Then it goes on about how the pamphlet isn’t trying to get them to join anything, or give any money, unlike other religious pamphlets. The inside just asks 20 simple questions to get people thinking about their faith critically.
I get a real rush putting out these pamphlets. I have to be all ninja like so I don’t get caught. Sometimes I’ll sit down at a table with my stuff, wait a few minutes, and get up, conveniently forgetting to take the pamphlet with me. I love to put these in the religious books sections of book stores, there I can really hit my target audience.
The bumper stickers in the car give me a bit of a thrill, but not so much as sneaking around with pamphlets. I guess I just feel safer with a physical barrier between me and them. Though I have been honked at, shouted at, and flicked off before while sitting at a red light. (How christian, eh?) There have been times when I’ve nervously expected a bullet to come through the glass behind me and kill me, or for my car to be rammed, or for someone to throw something at my windshield. That’s all a thrill too, though it does make me wonder about my opponents when I have to worry about being physically attacked and they don’t. What do you think that says about them?