Pharyngula

I get email

Good news! While I still get flooded with email every time Bill Donohue puts my address in a press release, I’m getting 90% fewer death threats! I think that maybe the example of Ms Kroll and her trollish husband has made people thinking twice before explicitly spelling out their gruesome plans, so that’s an improvement.

I’m still getting way too much repetitive crap, though. Yes, people, I know you’re offended. You don’t all need to tell me. If I had time to reply to each one of you individually, I’d simply tell you to tough it out — I’m offended by you, but none of us have a right to not be offended. So let me just tell you collectively: I’ve heard that message, and the message that you’ll pray for me, and the message that I’ll be going to hell, and the message that you think I need to be sent to jail or an asylum, and I don’t care what you think, so put a sock in it already. OK? OK. I’ve now got a bunch of filters in place that trash mail that mentions certain common keywords (hint to people legitimately attempting to contact me: try not to sound too Catholic), so there’s not even the point of harassment to your continued volleys. You can all stop now.

Anyway, in the hopes that at least a few of these loons will notice how silly their protestations look, I’ve put a semi-random sampling below the fold. Or, at least, I hope it will at least induce them to proofread before they send their whines into my trash folder.

Bryan Stikeleather is a Ph.D. student at the University of Pittsburgh, and this is the way his mind works. Actually, a lot of Catholics have been sending me email along these lines — do you all fantasize about raping and murdering people? Please stop reading the Old Testament!

Just wanted to send you a note to say that if someone publicized that they were going to kidnap your wife, Mary, and your kids Alaric, Connlann, and Skatje, rape them brutally, kill them, throw them in a trashcan, and then laugh and brag about it, then you just might have just a hint of the outrage that you have caused many good people.

Hoss Gardner wants to hurt the educational system of some mysterious state I’ve never heard of in retaliation. Read further and you’ll discover the irony of that.

You have put y our education institution in the middle of this. So every agency, public and private, that gives to Minnisota University will be informed of your actions and letters of protest will be going to halt all funding. The bureau of Minnisota Tourism and Chamber of Commerce will be notified and a boycot started against the state of minnisota. We will hit you economically every way we can.

And there’s more! Hoss keeps sending me email.

I work at a school working with high school students. If I did anything like this and publized it I would be fired for unprofessional behavior.

But beyond that, it seems to me that you are afraid. I noticed on your site that there is a small insert about violent attacks be reported. So its true that the Christian martyrs have and had more guts than atheists. After all you are afraid that now you have insult the Catholics and the Muslims, you might be hurt.

Mainly I’m afraid of the Catholics. The Muslims haven’t threatened me at all. But…Hoss works in a school? That is the most frightful thing I’ve read yet.

This one just calls himself “Al. G.”.

hey jew if you got balls say somthing about your jewish backround fag.or the moslems

Well, gosh, I don’t think I have any Jewish background — at least not anywhere in the last few centuries. Why are so many of these letter writers calling me Jewish?

At least Ron Peplau is a little more imaginative in his queries.

Your actions are irrational. You must have done this before. Are you a wiccan.

Why, no, Ron! I’m an atheist! Wiccans are kind of silly, don’t you think?

I read this one with some concern — I’m happily married, and anyway, I don’t really swing that way. Jason really needs to find his own teddy bear and bottom.

Hello, my name is jason Larrimore, I am a 35 year old mechanic from Thomasville, AL. I am a Catholic Christian, I would like to desacrate your fat ass. I know that I shouldn’t feel that way, but you are truly ther worst kind of ignorant.Give me a call {if you are man enough} and I will come to you to deliver your ass whipping. 334-410-0611. I’m sure that you won’t call, I’m sure that you will know the truth eventually, hopefully sooner than too late. I will pray for you, even though I would really enjoy kicking your ass.

If nothing else, he has a future writing copy for the classified ads section of your local city weekly.

Rick DeLano is more representative — he sends his demands to both me and President Bruininks (who must be heartily sick of all this).

Please be advised that there is a limit beyond which gratuitous, evil and demonic hatred expressed toward Catholics will either be dealt with by the appropriate authorities, as it should have been long ago in this instant case, or else the victims of these hate crimes will have no choice but to defend themselves against the unopposed spread of this blatant, bigoted, Nazi-like hatred.

I strongly urge, advise, and recommend that you fire this bigot and hate criminal NOW, because if you do not, you will have opened the door to something terrible indeed, a return to the religious persecutions and ugly anti-Catholic vandalism for which this country has had plenty of occasion to be ashamed in the past.

If that particular Pandora’s Box is opened up how very sorry those authorities will be, who could have intervened with a decent application of existing authoritative guidelines against such evil and vile contempt and bias.

Stop the bigots and haters NOW.

Fire this grotesque blasphemer Myers NOW.

Stop the desecrators of the Catholic eucharist RIGHT NOW.

Or we will have no choice but to conclude that our defense will have to rely upon our own resources.

Most sincerely,

Rick DeLano

Right…Surrender Dorothy, or we’ll send in the flying monkeys!

Mr S. K. Kutai is very, very Catholic. And very, very stupid.

so you are a biologist, huh. I presume you are quite acquainted with amoeba; you know the thing that divides and divides and divides without doing the thing that you and your wife do as a bedtime pastime.. no, you don’t know why it divides and divides and divides apart from appropriating it some kind of ‘intelligence’which it has not. so you see, you are quite stupid on that. Is that all you can be, a stupid biologist? you can’t even stop aging. look at your tummy!!!why didn’t you learn to be a philosopher? so at least you can understand the associations of words and their effect on society. how much do you love your son. myers? or are you looking at him just as a big blob – a collection of amoeba-like entities? a blob you could abuse to satisfy your animal instinct? given your state of biology-based stupidity, i presume it’s not immoral for you to fondle your son to satisfy your penis’ needs, huh? afterall you are not on any moral code; you are just a plain professor of biology, someone the world can survive without….just a blob of amoeba – a blob that is hell-bound until your 9th generation..Have you heard of the candle fire at the stadium biblicum ofm in hongkong , myers? I presume not. well that fire is from Jerusalem. it is especially transmitted. do you know about the words of consecration for the consecrated hosts, myers? they are the same words used by Jesus and handed over to Catholic priests through the ages through apostolic succession. and what Jesus wants done, it goes. many martyred their lives to get His Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity to the present. don’t think a desecration of the Eucharist by you will go unabated. what you did was sacrilegious. you can laugh at what you did, but you have also brought abomination to yourself and your generations to come. you are hell-bound, myers!!! I can only advise you to repent. go to a Catholic priest and confess….or hell shall be your rightful dues. we’ll see each other but from oppossite sides of the great divide…I’ll raise my hand to remind you, and you’ll raise your clenched hand with a grotesque face to acknowledge me but you’ll be naked and burning all eaten up by your generations of cursed posterity.

Yeah, my brain hurts too. I hope you didn’t strain yourself actually trying to make sense of that.

Dorothy Westermann of Eau Claire is a bit peeved.

Your actions described below indicate you are not fit to be a professor at any institution of learning. Your immature and irrational actions are not only hateful, hurtful and destructive, you should not be allowed access to young people. Your intentional harm to both Christians and Muslims should be punished by jail time, firing from the University staff and social ostracism.

You have used the education, position and privileges you have received in life to spew your bile from a high podium. This makes you also an ingrate and a disgrace to the University of Minnesota.

I other words, I hope you rot. You are not worthy to be called human.

What? I’m not human, but I bet she thinks a blastocyst is!

Just to be fair, let me mention the current tally: somewhere well above 12,000 hate mail messages from religious people, mostly Catholic; two reasonable messages from Catholics who said that while they are unshaken in their faith, they approve of my opposition to cracker idolatry; and zero comments of any kind from admitted Muslims.

I’m afraid that I won’t be able to estimate the numbers in the future, now that they’re being automatically trashed, but I think it’s safe to say that the Catholics have run the scoreboard.

Comments

  1. #1 Dustin
    July 26, 2008

    Just wanted to send you a note to say that if someone publicized that they were going to kidnap your wife, Mary, and your kids Alaric, Connlann, and Skatje, rape them brutally, kill them, throw them in a trashcan, and then laugh and brag about it, then you just might have just a hint of the outrage that you have caused many good people.

    A grad student writes something like this, but it’s Webster Cook and the guy who did nothing but warm the pew beside him who deserve to be expelled?
    http://video.google.com/videosearch?hl=en&q=hitchens%20hate%20speech&um=1&ie=UTF-8&sa=N&tab=wv#

  2. #2 fhge
    July 26, 2008

    hmm a telephon number. i wonder what you could do with that…

  3. #3 Dustin
    July 26, 2008

    hmm a telephon number. i wonder what you could do with that…

    Leave the phone number alone. I thought you guys learned your lesson in the Krollateral damage episode.

  4. #4 Jim RL
    July 26, 2008

    As someone who was raised Catholic I have to say I am really surprised at how crazy these people are. I always thought when we were told the host “really is” Jesus it was just Clintonian word play. Even as a child I remember teachers fumbling through explanations, and I just accepted it “really is” even though it obviously isn’t. Sigh, I suppose we aren’t as removed from the dark ages as we thought.

    I also find it weird that the religious automatically think about rape and murder when they think of a world without god. I have to think most of these people are decent human beings, but do they really want to rape and murder people? Are they constantly thinking “Oh boy, I’d love to rape and kill so-and-so. Too bad god would be pissed”? Is there really no other reason not to rape and kill people?

  5. #5 Christian Ridley
    July 26, 2008

    Such unabated ignorance!
    The only thing I can do to attempt to maintain some sanity is laugh. And boy is this making me laugh.

  6. #6 JoJo
    July 26, 2008

    How long before you close that email account and start another?

  7. #7 Jim RL
    July 26, 2008

    Dustin, I couldn’t agree more. Can Bryan Stikeleather really not differentiate between a communion wafer and four very real people!? Besides, do these people not realize you fucking chew, swallow, digest, and eliminate the host? This is not a very dignified fate is it? Let it decompose in a landfill. Hopefully they have methane capture and utilization at the Morris landfill. The wafer could create renewable energy.

  8. #8 firemancarl
    July 26, 2008

    Congrats PZ. I am glad that the nutties have been “turned off” by your unwillingness to back down. I suppose we should not be surprised at the absolute breathtaking stupidity shown by the fundagelicals. Thanks, above all, for being a voice of reason in a sea of stupidity.

  9. #9 kerovon
    July 26, 2008

    I just glanced at the latest press release on the Catholic Leagues website, and in it they seem to be comparing PZ’s cracker desecration with a professor who was fired for having child porn on his computer.

    “In 2001, this part of the Tenure Code was invoked against a professor at UMN because he had images of child porn on his computer. It should now be invoked against Myers, and that is why we will appeal to UMN’s Board of Regents to do just that. It strains credulity to maintain that Christian students can expect fair treatment by a faculty member who has publicly shown nothing but contempt for their religion.”

    That says something about Catholic mentality that the consider wasting food (if it can be called that, I’d never eat one) to be as severe as a crime as child porn.

  10. #10 Fabulously in the City
    July 26, 2008

    That guy didn’t even spell Minnesota right…nor did he even mention your University right!!! He referred to it as “Minisota University”…

    Honey, it’s the University of Minnesota!!!

    Ha, these people are HILARIOUS

  11. #11 Logicel
    July 26, 2008

    Jason Larrimore’s missive is cracking me up so much I am now purblind.

    Seriously, if this pathetic show of confused thinking and warped emotional reaction occurs while these people are supposedly under the positive influence of religion, what would they be like without such a benign influence? Would they be the same, better, or worse?

    I have always kept a personal distance from Catholics, even the moderates, because they are just so boring and droningly trite, but now I am entertaining the notion that maybe I should run in the opposite direction as fast as my little atheist legs can carry me the next time I encounter one.

    For you Catholics reading this thread, have no fear from me, as I will avoid you folks like the plague.

  12. #12 Dscott
    July 26, 2008

    What is Bryan Stikeleather’s email address? I have to ask him something.

  13. #13 me
    July 26, 2008

    Fire this grotesque blasphemer Myers NOW.

    “All I said to my wife was, that piece of halibut is good enough for Jehovah!”

  14. #14 SEF
    July 26, 2008

    they are the same words used by Jesus

    Leaving aside the issue of Jesus being a fictional character, claiming Jesus muttered magic spells in Roman Catholic Latin rather than some local language of his era is still very much along the lines of those crackers people who declaim about the Bible having to be in the original English (eg KJV).

  15. #15 Cheezits
    July 26, 2008

    There is something seriously deranged about a belief that puts maltreatment of a WAFER on a par with doing the same to someone’s family. Not that there aren’t sickos in every sector of society but the Catholic church actually encourages this insanity.

    I can’t figure out what these people want when they complain you don’t respect their beliefs. I saw people on the other threads condemning the great desecration on the grounds that it was like taking a security blanket from a little kid. Is that the sort of repect they want? Because to me that is more insulting to them as individuals than any trashing of a piece of bread, or even speaking up and saying that how STUPID that part of Catholic doctrine is. At least you give them credit for potentially being able to see the stupidity; I know I do. It rubs me the wrong way when people in these discussions talk about devout Catholics like they were five years old. I’d rather be insulted than patronized. But maybe that’s just me.

  16. #16 Sunn O)))
    July 26, 2008

    These emails remind me of a chapter in the Marylin Manson auto-bio where he published all the false affidavits filed against him for all these horrible things he was supposedly doing on stage.

    And who filed all these bogus affidavits? Decent, young christians, and the unbelievably sick and disgusting things they claimed that happened on stage (none of which actually did) truly shows who the sick minded people really are.

    They claimed he mutilated live animals on stage, then had sex with them, etc etc etc. Really depraved acts, but then again, these little liars are the ones who wrote this stuff so that really says it all about who is the greater evil.

    I’ve been watching from afar the whole cracker-gate thing, and I just can’t stop laughing at the emails. In one breath, they pray for your soul, and in the next they want to kick your ass.

    Good upstanding christians. Full of love and compassion.

  17. #17 Jason
    July 26, 2008

    “Just to be fair, let me mention the current tally: somewhere well above 12,000 hate mail messages from religious people, mostly Catholic; two reasonable messages from Catholics who said that while they are unshaken in their faith, they approve of my opposition to cracker idolatry; and zero comments of any kind from admitted Muslims.”

    I just wondered, do you have a total for supportive messages?

    Do you have any idea how many emails President Bruininks received, either in total or in support?

  18. #18 Andrés Diplotti
    July 26, 2008

    I’m still trying to wrap my mind around the fact that this people really believe that the cracker is their god, just because they were told so. And not just believe it, but assume it’s an obvious and unmissable fact, to the point of thinking that only a murderous person could abuse that particular piece of confectionery. It boggles the mind.

  19. #19 mr-zero
    July 26, 2008

    Is that a legitimate telephone number? Does it really belong to who it claims it belongs too. Perhaps not wise to post it after the MKroll incidents.
    Z

  20. #20 OctoberMermaid
    July 26, 2008

    Poor wittle babies got their feewings hurt.

    Good thing they have sky daddy to comfort them.

    Doesn’t seem to be helping much…

  21. #21 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Absolutely terrible! Is nothing sacred?

  22. #22 Lysa
    July 26, 2008

    Christians continue to amuse me to no end. How a vast population of people who claim to live by the teachings of Jesus in a brotherhood of love and tolerance can become so enraged by something so meaningless that they threaten violence is just hilarious. Yet us godless heathens are able to have tolerance and compassion in our hearts for all people, without the vital guidance of God and his bible.

  23. #23 PZ Myers
    July 26, 2008

    I’m not giving out their email addresses, sorry.

    As for Larrimore’s phone number, please don’t call it unless you really, seriously definitely desire him to desecrate your ass. And if you are MAN ENOUGH.

  24. #24 anthropic
    July 26, 2008

    Wow. What scares me is these types of wackos are all around us. We were sold the “war on terror” line a few years ago. But the biggest dangers lurk among us in the the form of unfathomable stupidity.

    Unfortunately, these idiots will never change. Ever. As a whole, they are too ignorant and fearful to consider rational thinking (unless it serves their own greed or need for self-preservation).

    I have zero respect or tolerance for people who refuse to rise above their stupidity. I no longer associate with anyone who openly pushes their beliefs on me. There’s no point in debating them. It leads nowhere. Calling them on it feels more gratifying.

    Thus, I have no trouble calling religious wackos or conspiracy theorists “morons”, “cretins”,”wackjobs”, or worse. It’s like squeezing a painful zit :-)

  25. #25 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Yet us godless heathens are able to have tolerance and compassion in our hearts for all people, without the vital guidance of God and his bible.

    Thank God for that!! Amen.

  26. #26 Arnaud
    July 26, 2008

    “All I said to my wife was, that piece of halibut is good enough for Jehovah!”

    “He said it again!!”

  27. #27 OrneryPest
    July 26, 2008

    But professor, you gotta realize these Catholics have got big money tied up in their Fracken-crackers! They cost $8.99 for a box of 1000. A major part of the gadzillion megabuck church budget, you know!

  28. #28 True Bob
    July 26, 2008

    …don’t think a desecration of the Eucharist by you will go unabated…

    Do you mean PZ is still “desecrating” frackers? Damn, I thought we were in the denouement.

  29. #29 Todd
    July 26, 2008

    Baba @ # 21:

    Absolutely terrible! Is nothing sacred?

    Nope.

  30. #30 OctoberMermaid
    July 26, 2008

    You know, really, though, I’m amazed they keep sending you emails.

    Makes me sleepy.

    Counting sheep tends to do that.

  31. #31 Ferrous Patella
    July 26, 2008

    “…your kids Alaric, Connlann, and Skatje…”

    Yeah they make threats at your kids, but can any of these loons pronunciate your kids’ names?

  32. #32 Catholics, stop being so hysterical!
    July 26, 2008

    “In 2001, this part of the Tenure Code was invoked against a professor at UMN because he had images of child porn on his computer. It should now be invoked against Myers, and that is why we will appeal to UMN’s Board of Regents to do just that. It strains credulity to maintain that Christian students can expect fair treatment by a faculty member who has publicly shown nothing but contempt for their religion.”

    Myers hasn’t been fired for showing contempt for creationism (which is the same as showing contempt for certain versions of Christianity), so one wonders what makes Donohue think Myers is going to be fired for this.

  33. #33 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Unfortunately, these idiots will never change. Ever.

    That’s why re-education camps are so handy. Bring back the Gulag.

  34. #34 wjv
    July 26, 2008

    don’t think a desecration of the Eucharist by you will go unabated.

    “Unabated”? Now for some reason, that made me laugh.

  35. #35 Crudely Wrott
    July 26, 2008

    The inestimable Rick DeLano is kind enough to warn, “Please be advised that there is a limit beyond which gratuitous, evil and demonic hatred expressed toward Catholics will either be dealt with by the appropriate authorities, as it should have been long ago in this instant case . . .”

    I’m just guessing here, but wouldn’t the “appropriate authorities” be the being he calls by a name that is forbidden to be spoken as well as this being’s minions, who seem to be legion? And are not these agents the very ones that Rick and his congregation not only pray to faithfully and earnestly, but in whom the average Catholic will claim complete trust? So why invoke something as lame as vague threats issued at long distance by mere humans?

    Just thinking out loud here . . .

  36. #36 katie
    July 26, 2008

    At my small liberal arts alma mater, a tenured prof was recently fired for having a consenual affair with someone he met over the internet…

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20080721.LPERSONAL21/TPStory/?query=acadia

    I get the impression tenure isn’t as tenured as I thought?

  37. #37 Ross
    July 26, 2008

    “how much do you love your son. myers? or are you looking at him just as a big blob – a collection of amoeba-like entities”

    But surely Catholics are meant to love all gods creatures? It saddens me to think there is a group of people who have it in for single cell organisms.

  38. #38 brandon
    July 26, 2008

    Jebus, there used to be a time when Catholic schools actually taught people how to write. I see that time is long gone.

    Larrimore’s 334-410-0611 phone number needs to be dispersed across the net.

  39. #39 Sandi
    July 26, 2008

    Myers: You shouldn’t complain about proofreading when you have such a poor command of the English language yourself. To wit: “I’m offended by you, but none of us have a right to not be offended.” None of us implies “not one of us.” Hence, you should say, “None of us has…” (Incidentally, you also have a split infinitive.) You see, its only a smart idea to pontificate when you know what the hell you’re talking about.

  40. #40 Svetogorsk
    July 26, 2008

    You see, its only a smart idea to pontificate when you know what the hell you’re talking about.

    If you’re the same Sandi who posted reams of demented gibberish in the recent 2000-plus comments thread, how on earth are you in any position to judge?

  41. #41 Jim RL
    July 26, 2008

    Hey, Sandi shouldn’t that be “…it’s only a smart idea…”.
    You see, “its” is the possessive form of “it”, and you wish to use the contraction of “it is”. Well done.

  42. #42 craig
    July 26, 2008

    Personally, I think it’s going to get worse, not better.
    As society advances technologically, I think we’re going to end up with more, crazier fundamentalists rather that fewer… because only a small percentage of the populace actually understand technology. To the rest it’s essentially “magic.” Ad the magic gets more and more confusing, a large segment of the population will become more and more estranged from the technologically literate ones. Tension, anxiety, misunderstanding and a general feeling of lack of control is going to manifest itself in crazier and crazier cultish behavior.

    Just think of the distrust and ignorance behind the “moon landings were faked,” the “government hiding aliens” and other nutty concepts, and magnify that by a thousand as people are less and less able to understand and deal with the technology around them.

    I swear, 100 years from now there will be churches worshiping nanotech.

  43. #43 SC
    July 26, 2008

    I hope you didn’t strain yourself actually trying to make sense of that.

    Too late.

  44. #44 Ken Mareld
    July 26, 2008

    PZ,
    You must be a demon of the time warping type. To handle all of what is on your plate MUST require Supernatural effort. This is TRUE PROOF that you are only a faux atheist.
    OUT with you demon! OUT with you demon! Oh, the exorcism didn’t work. WTF? I paid 666.00 dollars for the internet exorcism kit and you are still on my darned bookmarks.
    I want my money back.

    Ken

  45. #45 hyperdeath
    July 26, 2008

    If I was you, I’d reply to all the hate-mail with just three words:

    “I forgive you”

  46. #46 Ben Stein
    July 26, 2008

    #’s 39 and 41

    Come on you guys, don’t be such grammar nazis.

  47. #47 Sandi
    July 26, 2008

    Myers: As for your rant the other day against Catholics (“The Great Desecration”), let me make the following observation: you’re like Rip Van Winkle. Most of your rant involved the year 1310 and the Middle Ages. We are now in the year 2008–perhaps you didn’t get the memo? Talk about holding a long grudge! Maybe you’re compensating for your, ahem, shortcomings in other areas.

  48. #48 LisaJ
    July 26, 2008

    “You can’t even stop again. Look at your tummy!!!”

    haha, this was my favourite. OK, I really don’t get the tummy part, but it’s hilarious. I love how idiots seem to think that as biologists we should be basically superhuman and know how to cure JUST OURSELVES from all diseases. Priceless.

    I’m kinda sad that you’re trashing your messages now, because these are so entertaining. But I’m glad for you that things seem to be lightening up a bit.

  49. #49 OctoberMermaid
    July 26, 2008

    “We are now in the year 2008–perhaps you didn’t get the memo?”

    And yet here you still are worshiping a cracker and treating a book of fairy tales as a history textbook.

  50. #50 Sandi
    July 26, 2008

    Jim RL at #41 is quite right. I really should have proofread before posting. Oh, well, at least I had fewer errors than Myers.

  51. #51 Ken Mareld
    July 26, 2008

    Oooops,
    Sorry about the exorcism. It turns out that someone is actually selling a book about internet exorcism. Who knew?

    Ken

  52. #52 Tulse
    July 26, 2008

    You shouldn’t complain about proofreading when you have such a poor command of the English language yourself.

    Because using a split infinitive is just as bad as not being able to spell one of the fifty US states.

  53. #53 Ben Stein
    July 26, 2008

    Come on you guys, don’t be such grammar nazis.

    I was thinking to myself the last time any of my relatives saw grammarians telling them what to do they were telling them to go to the showers to get gassed.

  54. #54 Jim RL
    July 26, 2008

    I’m generally not a grammar nazi because I tend to make numerous errors when posting comments. My point was that repeatedly misspelling the name of a US state is not the same as using the wrong verb tense in a convoluted sentence. PZ wasn’t being a grammar nazi. He was just pointing out blatant and repeated spelling and grammar mistakes. Such systemic abuse of the English language does reflect poorly on the writer. Sandi’s missing character and PZ’s verb tenses are not systemic errors.

  55. #55 James
    July 26, 2008

    That split infinitive thing is a pet peeve of mine. The rule comes from Victorian-era grammarians who thought that Latin was a “perfect language” or whatever. Just like modern descendants of Latin like Spanish, the infinitive tense of a verb is a single word and cannot be split. They decided that that also made sense for Germanic languages. Splitting infinitives in English is not “bad grammar”, and doing it can often make a sentence more clear.

  56. #56 scooter
    July 26, 2008

    just a blob of amoeba – a blob that is hell-bound until your 9th generation.

    HOLY CRAP!!!! It’s the BLOB !!!!!

    Hurry, somebody call Steve McQueen

  57. #57 Ben Stein
    July 26, 2008

    #53

    Language leads to killing.

  58. #58 JonathanL
    July 26, 2008

    Myers: As for your rant the other day against Catholics (“The Great Desecration”), let me make the following observation: you’re like Rip Van Winkle. Most of your rant involved the year 1310 and the Middle Ages. We are now in the year 2008–perhaps you didn’t get the memo? Talk about holding a long grudge! Maybe you’re compensating for your, ahem, shortcomings in other areas.

    Sandi, I only wish you could appreciate how monumentally stupid that sounds coming from someone who practices a religion based on a 2000 year old book.

  59. #59 WA
    July 26, 2008

    I wonder how many of these whack-jobs will now turn around and join in the “Official Pray for PZ Myers Month.

    And if they do, will they be praying that he converts, or will they be praying that he will finally see the beauty of ass desecration and give them a call?

  60. #60 anthropic
    July 26, 2008

    Sandi@#39,

    That’s the best you have? An attack on grammar? Wow, what an impressive intellect. I quiver.

  61. #61 Celtic_Evolution
    July 26, 2008

    @ Sandi…

    Get over it. Seriously.

    That is all.

  62. #62 geru
    July 26, 2008

    Poor Minnisota, I’m sure their tourism is going to suffer from all the boycotting.

    Hang in there PZ, maybe the kook mails will begin to decrease after a few months. :)

  63. #63 Jim RL
    July 26, 2008

    Sandi, the whole point is that it is 2008. In the 21st century people shouldn’t make death threats over the well-being of a small piece of unleavened bread. It is absolutely ridiculous. In a rational society, PZ’s actions would be eccentric, but not offensive. Putting a nail through some bread should not be a big deal.

  64. #64 Duvenoy
    July 26, 2008

    What a bunch of mooks!

    But to anyone who reads history, particularly that of religions in general and the Catholic Church in particular, it should come as small suprise. Vicious attacks on anyone who who disagrees and is less than silent about it was SOP. It was only a very few centuries ago that this idiotic cracker business would have resulted in heresy charges for everyone concerned including thee & me. Someone else’s heresy was taken very seriously and, evidently, it still is with some of the more loosely-wrapped faithful. They grieve that they don’t live in a place where Church law is THE law. I suggest that they immigrate to Saudi Arabia or Iran. They’d have to change their faith, but what the hell; it’s all the same thing.

    I think it’s about over, although I’m sure that these maroons will find some new quasi-outrage to knot up their delicate knickers and provide me, at least, with more amusement. Thanks, Catholic blatherers! I enjoyed the ride!

    doov

  65. #65 acj
    July 26, 2008

    English isn’t my native language, and if someone told me my English sucked badly, I’d be the last one to contradict – but hey, some of the folks emailing PZ are even worse than me, and they are f’ing native speakers! That kind of restores my trust in my English teachers.

  66. #66 Nick Gotts
    July 26, 2008

    Sandi,
    Catholic apologists are forever boasting about the long and glorious history of the Church. you don’t get to do that, then trurn round and say “but that was a long time ago” when it comes to the nastier parts of that history – which are very, very nasty indeed.

  67. #67 OctoberMermaid
    July 26, 2008

    “I wonder how many of these whack-jobs will now turn around and join in the “Official Pray for PZ Myers Month.”

    I like the comments where they can’t figure out PZ motives, assume it’s unknowable, and decide that he’s just full of hate and only wanted to do it to offend and hurt Christians.

    Things are so much easier when you don’t have to think.

    I’m sure if they bothered getting the facts or looking at the context, they’d just be disappointed that things aren’t as black and white as in their version. Who wants to find that out? Better not to even find out at all!

  68. #68 WA
    July 26, 2008

    Geru (#62), I’m sure their tourism is suffering already from the fact that no one seems to be able to find Minnisota on a map!

  69. #69 jorge666
    July 26, 2008

    Dr. Myers,
    You should not filter off of the e-mails. Instead you should gather the worst and most inane into a compendium and dedicate it the hate-monger Donahue. Call it “The Whackaloon Tales or Adventures of a Cracker Fracker” or something like that. In this country these missives plus some of your adroit commentary should contribute to a blockbuster best seller. You know how the American public eats up tales of mystery, persecution, violence, etc. Just look at the sales from the “Da Vinci Code”. I would suggest the profits be used to create a scholarship for the two CFU students being viciously persecuted by the catholics and to fund research into religious whackaloonery. Perhaps as a #1 on the NY Times Book List, there may be enough money generated to establish several foundations and support several research projects.
    Now THAT would really frost their fracken crackers, eh?

  70. #70 Ben Stein
    July 26, 2008

    That kind of restores my trust in my English teachers.

    Grammar, as taught by English teachers, has nothing – nothing – to say about how life originated. Has nothing to say about how the governing principles in the universe – gravity, thermodynamics, motion, fluid motion – how any of those originated. It’s…it’s got some gigantic missing pieces.

  71. #71 Doug S.
    July 26, 2008

    Mr. Meyers, have you read the criticism posted on Alonzo Fyfe’s Atheist Ethicist blog?

    He’s sent you several emails, but they might have gotten lost in with the spam and the death threats.

  72. #72 Techskeptic
    July 26, 2008

    Craig #42,

    “I swear, 100 years from now there will be churches worshiping nanotech.”

    no there won’t its immoral.

  73. #73 J Myers
    July 26, 2008

    It strains credulity…

    *blink*

    When did Catholics become concerned about that?

  74. #74 Anton Mates
    July 26, 2008

    None of us implies “not one of us.” Hence, you should say, “None of us has…”

    Nope. If pluralizing “none” is good enough for the King James, it’s good enough for PZ. He’s respectful like that.

    (Incidentally, you also have a split infinitive.)

    Jeez, now you’re disagreeing with Star Trek. Is nothing sacred?

    The SAT writers do not define the English language. Read more books!

    “People have been splitting infinitives since the 14th century, and some of the most noteworthy splitters include John Donne, Samuel Pepys, Daniel Defoe, Benjamin Franklin, Samuel Johnson, William Wordsworth, Abraham Lincoln, George Eliot, Henry James, and Willa Cather.”

  75. #75 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Catholic apologists are forever boasting about the long and glorious history of the Church. you don’t get to do that, then trurn round and say “but that was a long time ago” when it comes to the nastier parts of that history – which are very, very nasty indeed.

    Kind of like atheists denying the atheist atrocities of the 20th century as “not true atheism”. Admit it – Stalin was just as capable rational thought as you.

  76. #76 Kryth
    July 26, 2008

    Ah, Catholic love. Can you feel the love? Brought to you by the ministry of peace.

    They keep using that word. I do not think it means what they think it means.

  77. #77 Alcari
    July 26, 2008

    Hmm something’s wrong here.
    Google says this:

    Jason Larrimore (334)636-1328 1097 W 3rd St S, Thomasville, AL 36784

    And he says his phone number is (334)410-0611, which is actually located in Selma, AL. 55 miles away.

    I’m willing to bet giving mr. Larrimore a call at the first, not mentioned, number is a lot more effective. He might have been dumb enough to post his information only, but whatever you do, don’t supply him with a few free korans and shipping boxes.

    nudge nudge, wink wink.

  78. #78 scooter
    July 26, 2008

    As for Larrimore’s phone number, please don’t call it unless you really, seriously definitely desire him to desecrate your ass.

    It’s handy to have around for those special moments around three AM, when I’m too drunk to type, but I still feel like having a dialog.

  79. #79 Andrés Diplotti
    July 26, 2008

    Most of your rant involved the year 1310 and the Middle Ages. We are now in the year 2008

    As it is readily apparent in the outfit and general demeanor of this people. It’s a remarkable thing how things have changed, right?

  80. #80 BobC
    July 26, 2008

    I bet nice little old ladies who are Catholics, who wouldn’t dream of saying an unkind word to anyone, believe atheists go to hell and deserve to go there.

  81. #81 Andrew
    July 26, 2008

    My roommates and I prank called poor Jason. He’s a dumb instinctive dude, but one of us did a chat with him and he’s a bit remorseful and feels kinda stupid for what he did.

    I’m pissed at my roommate for letting him know his phone number had been posted – I was gonna call as a collections agent.

  82. #82 Neural T
    July 26, 2008

    Jim RL #4

    Wow, that’s one of the most rational responses from a Catholic that I’ve heard since this ordeal started.

  83. #83 thickslab
    July 26, 2008

    Cn smn pls pnch Snd n th cnt?

    [misogyny makes me angry. No more, please.]

  84. #84 Dawn
    July 26, 2008

    I have found all this very amusing. Back in my religious days, I worked from 8am-4pm every Saturday and Sunday. This meant that I could not attend my Lutheran church with my family. In a discussion, we decided I would attend the local Catholic church with my Catholic aunt for Saturday night mass. I was not Catholic; I was never baptized into the Catholic church, but for well over a year I attended mass and took communion, without EVER going to confession or anything. The priest, who knew my aunt well, also knew I was not Catholic. Never stopped him from giving me communion. He never said anything about it.

    In fact, at the wedding of my aunt and uncle, held in the local Catholic church, the mass/service was co-performed by the priest and a Lutheran minister; both gave communion to whomever came up to the alter rail, Catholic, Lutheran, Baptist, whomever. No one asked what religion you were (if ANY…)

    To me, that was TRUE Christianity. All were welcome to the alter, and all were treated the same. As an atheist now, I wouldn’t go up for communion. But then, I recognized true love for all people (and no one got into trouble for taking a host back to their seat and eating it there, either…)

    Wonder what these rampant writers would have done at the wedding?

  85. #85 Justin T.
    July 26, 2008

    would like to desacrate your fat ass.

    You desecrated the eucharist by putting a nail through it. So does that mean that he wants to… Oh my.

  86. #86 Bunk
    July 26, 2008

    From what I could find out (for free), that is an unpublished phone number in the Montgomery, AL area. Thomasville is 85 miles SW of Montgomery. The phone number probably belongs to an innocent party.

  87. #87 OctoberMermaid
    July 26, 2008

    “Oh my.”

    I can’t help but imagine George Takei saying that.

  88. #88 Andrés Diplotti
    July 26, 2008

    Absolutely terrible! Is nothing sacred?

    “The individual human mind. In a child’s power to master the multiplication table, there is more sanctity than in all your shouted ‘amens’ and ‘holy holies’ and ‘hosannas.’ An idea is a greater monument than a cathedral. And the advance of man’s knowledge is a greater miracle than all the sticks turned to snakes or the parting of the waters.”

  89. #89 Jon H
    July 26, 2008

    PZ wrote: “As for Larrimore’s phone number, please don’t call it unless you really, seriously definitely desire him to desecrate your ass. ”

    Oh yeah, that’ll work, PZ.

    You don’t learn very quickly, do you?

  90. #90 SC
    July 26, 2008

    Can someone please punch Sandi in the cunt?

    Take it somewhere else.

  91. #91 waldteufel
    July 26, 2008

    Thanks for posting some of the Catholic hate mail. They
    illustrate beautifully how religion kills the brain and strips away morality in order to replace it with blind obedience to utter bullshit.

    There can be no doubt of the strong correlation between rabid religiosity and the inability to form a rational sentence with properly spelled words.

  92. #92 OctoberMermaid
    July 26, 2008

    “Take it somewhere else.”

    Like the balls?

  93. #93 black wolf
    July 26, 2008

    Hi Ben!
    Nice to have you here so that we may share your unsurpassed wisdom. I heard an English teacher was fired for teaching early modern English in a modern literature course. I hope on behalf of all of us that you’ll look into that. I look forward to your next project.

  94. #94 szqc
    July 26, 2008

    Hey! Rick DeLano sent you a missive? He is a well known defender of geocentrism even on the Catholic blogs; thinks Galileo still should be on the Pope’s shit list because there’s no scientific evidence for heliocentrism – even today. Surprise, surprise…

  95. #95 craig
    July 26, 2008

    “Kind of like atheists denying the atheist atrocities of the 20th century as “not true atheism”. Admit it – Stalin was just as capable rational thought as you.”

    uh, no. Stalin was quite possibly, actually probably truly an atheist. The point is, he didn’t use atheism as a REASON for killing people.
    Many people have been killed FOR god or Allah. The people Staling had killed he had killed simply to stay in power. If he could have had a better hold on power by proclaiming himself Pope, that;s what he would have done.

  96. #96 SEF
    July 26, 2008

    Splitting infinitives in English is not “bad grammar”, and doing it can often make a sentence more clear.

    To boldly split infinitives which no man has split before – or even if someone has, I’m still very much in favour of it myself. It’s one of the things which makes English better than those other languages – along with the bolt-together-a-tense kit which makes convoluted Doctor Who scenarios possible to describe.

  97. #97 Jim RL
    July 26, 2008

    Neural T, I said I was raised Catholic. I’ve since become an atheist. I really started supporting PZ in this when I saw it as standing in solidarity with Cook. The whole Cook ordeal could fly under the radar with little media attention. He could get expelled or suspended and no one would remember next week. I see what PZ is doing as using his soap box to shed some light on this lunacy. Reading the responses in this post, it is easy to see which side I’d rather be on.

  98. #98 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Can someone please punch Sandi in the cunt?

    How super-intellectually rational!!

  99. #99 BobC
    July 26, 2008

    Jim RL #4
    Wow, that’s one of the most rational responses from a Catholic that I’ve heard since this ordeal started.
    Posted by: Neural T

    Jim RL said “As someone who was raised Catholic”. He didn’t say whether or not he’s still a Catholic. I’m betting he’s no longer a Catholic, but perhaps he will let me know I’m wrong.

  100. #100 kerovon
    July 26, 2008

    You should exercise some discretion in calling Jason Larrimore. For all we know, he could have just given the information of an atheist in his neighborhood to try to get us to spam them. Don’t do spamming unless you actually have confirmation that Jason Larrimore is the one who sent the email.

  101. #101 Todd
    July 26, 2008

    Oh, well, at least I had fewer errors than Myers.

    Sandi, grammatical errors are one thing, logical errors are another. In that regard you win.

    Hey Baba – “atheist atrocities”? Really? I don’t recall Stalin doing anything in the name of atheism. Let’s not forget that Stalin was educated in a monestery. Hmm, I wonder where he got all his good atrocity ideas from.

  102. #102 Capital Dan
    July 26, 2008

    “Please be advised that there is a limit beyond which gratuitous, evil and demonic hatred expressed toward Catholics will either be dealt with by the appropriate authorities, as it should have been long ago in this instant case . . .”

    Long ago in this instant case?!?

    I… umm… They… How… err…

    I can’t even try to make sense of this nozzle’s gibberish. Really, man. With writing such as that, they should ALL be called “Hoss.”

    It’s a bloody miracle these knuckle-draggers don’t step on their own tongues when they try to negotiate a flight of stairs.

  103. #103 jorge666
    July 26, 2008

    #86

    Google shouldn’t be relied on too heavily.

    The cell phone number of a person who lives in Thomasville can be a Selma number (or possibly vice versa). My son who lives down the street has a cell phone number from a small town in Texas. We are living about 1,200 miles away from that town. When that Texas town comes up on the caller ID, I know it is him though.

    It’s a miracle!

  104. #104 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Can someone please punch Sandi in the cunt?

    How super-intellectually rational!!

  105. #105 blf
    July 26, 2008

    I’ve now got a bunch of filters in place that trash mail that mentions certain common keywords

    You might want to send a friendly note to the Gmail admins warning them that there’s an arkful of toxic waste going into the bit bucket and to exercise proper precautions when emptying it.

  106. #106 Rayven Alandria
    July 26, 2008

    They sure do have a fascination with sex. I guess that’s what happens when you turn it into something evil. I find so strange that they accuse someone else of being a child molester. You’d think they might want to avoid the subject. Maybe they secretly like the subject. Vicarious enjoyment?

    This is what I find hilarious. In regard to the woman, (I think it was a woman, I’m not going to bother reading that shite again), who claims PZ’s descendants down to the ninth generation will suffer for his evil.

    Here’s a bite off my Bit-o-Logic bar you moron, if you believe that PZ’s descendants are doomed, you have to believe that it is highly likely; no, it is absolutely certain, that one of your ancestors has done something naughty enough that it damned you to hell. If there’s a loophole, (there’s always a loophole with these Catholics), that gets you out of eternal damnation, then that same loophole is there for PZ’s poor descendants. The Catholics writing you and posting here seem to have no ability to think rationally. Whatever bullshit fits their rage at the moment will do for them, no matter how stupid it is.

  107. #107 Bob Vogel
    July 26, 2008

    #52, Tulse, I’m glad you had a chance to watch that Randy Pausch video before they apparently took it down. References to Captain Kirk and all… It was one of the most inspiring messages I’ve ever heard.

  108. #108 unclejeffie
    July 26, 2008

    There have been a number of interesting posts by Alonzo Fyle on his blog Atheist Ethicist (atheistethicist.blogspot.com)concerning Dr. Myers and Mr. Donohue and the “cracker”. I think it would be appropriate for Dr. Myers to post his thoughts about what Alonzo has written (Mr. Donohue certainly won’t). Let us know if you will be saying anything about these posts Dr. Myers.

    unclejeffie

  109. #109 Jim RL
    July 26, 2008

    Good call BobC. I did accurately describe my feeling on the Eucharist, though. I was quite devout, but I never thought the host really was Jesus. I knew as a Catholic I believed it “really was”, but like I said, I thought it was all word play.

  110. #110 the strangest brew
    July 26, 2008

    The Catholic Church could stop this if they wanted to, but they obviously do not…
    They are quite happy to let the barking classes fight the good fight and the clergy do not even get their hands dirty being the consummate cowards that they are…they know the point is untenable…evil cretinous clowns that they are.

    But they are aware that to pontificate on this nonsense will either injure the catholic supremacy of dogma or leave themselves wide open to the charge of ….

    ‘What kind of sicko religion covers up child abuse but gets all spluttering and waffling about a cracker…?’

    So they leave that to ‘donkeyhue’ to rile up the clones.
    Handy having a ignorant delusional like him to do their dirty work…nothing can be traced back to them…cos apparently the CL and ‘donkeyhue’ in particular does not represent the RC’s in the states…very convenient though.

    As for trying to get the kid and his mate expelled that is just the ancient catholic hatred of education in the masses as classically practised by the sexually inadequate…they would be far happier if only their own anointed acolytes could be educated…

    They are frightened simple like so, the overreaction has met the meltdown criteria because these idiots are aware that their religion is failing, they are more irrelevant now then they have ever been, they see people laughing at them, and they want to strike out and hurt, and regain past glories of being an RC clone…so now they are acting like homicidal village idiots in their panic.

    Their dogma is falling apart in front of their eyes, there was no lightning strike on the kid for taking their invisible fairy hostage, there has been no natural disaster to cull the Atheist’s that are mocking their stupidity, and the four riders of the apocalypse are keeping their gee gee’s at home and kicking back with a six-pack.

    They fear the anti-christ because they will be the first to the wall come the revolution, and jebus is nowhere to be found except in some dodgy cracker.

    The prob being that even the delusional secretly know it is just a cracker. and that is the problem, nobody believes them now when they say otherwise, they have lost the element of fear that they love to wield so much.

    Maybe it is dawning slowly on them that they are really a laughing stock, even calls and appeals to other religions are falling on deaf ears, the Catholics are shaken and very frightened…it was not supposed to be like this…being in a religion and get laughed at…and not taken seriously…except by their own infected.

    oh dear!…how sad!…never mind!…

  111. #111 Dianne
    July 26, 2008

    we were told the host “really is” Jesus

    Let’s think this through. If the host really is Jesus then shouldn’t it really be pretty tough? Tough enough to deal with PZ Myers without resorting to deranged followers to get revenge? So either the cracker isn’t really Jesus or Jesus approves of Myers’ actions (or at least doesn’t mind them or thinks that the issue should be dealt with in the afterlife…at any rate, doesn’t plan to smite him any time soon.) Alternately, if the cracker is Jesus but isn’t able to deal with Myers, why should he/it be worshipped?

  112. #112 Dustin
    July 26, 2008

    You should exercise some discretion in calling Jason Larrimore. For all we know, he could have just given the information of an atheist in his neighborhood to try to get us to spam them. Don’t do spamming unless you actually have confirmation that Jason Larrimore is the one who sent the email.

    Also, as an example, my full name is not particularly common, but there are four people in this state who share it nonetheless.

  113. #113 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Hey Baba – “atheist atrocities”? Really? I don’t recall Stalin doing anything in the name of atheism. Let’s not forget that Stalin was educated in a monestery. Hmm, I wonder where he got all his good atrocity ideas from.

    You should do more reading then.

    Also,that should be m-o-n-a-s-t-e-r-y.

  114. #114 Jim RL
    July 26, 2008

    I thought the Old Testament god only punished to the 4th generation, which was merciful at the time. I also thought Jesus did away with the whole punished for your ancestors’ sins thing.

  115. #115 Rayven Alandria
    July 26, 2008

    Kind of like atheists denying the atheist atrocities of the 20th century as “not true atheism”. Admit it – Stalin was just as capable rational thought as you.

    As I have stated about 5 billion times already, Atheism has no church, no creed, no bylaws, no philosophy. No Atheist has anything to do with any other Atheist. I have no more to do with Stalin than I have to do with some random green eyed lady from days gone by. It is so utterly bizarre that you people cannot escape the concept of group thinking.

    Whether or not Stalin was an Atheist is irrelevant. He was an evil human. By your logic we are all responsible for him because we are all humans, or perhaps only men who shared his physical traits are responsible, or people who were of a certain height he was, or weighed exactly the same amount he did, or, or, or…..

    Why is that so frikkin’ hard for you to grasp?

  116. #116 SC
    July 26, 2008

    Like the balls?

    Like an ultra-Catholic blog, maybe – fantasies of sexually-charged violence really seem to be their cup of blood.

  117. #117 Neural T
    July 26, 2008

    WA #59

    I wonder how many of these whack-jobs will now turn around and join in the “Official Pray for PZ Myers Month.”

    The more the better, as it will mount the falsifying evidence for prayer.

  118. #118 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    The individual human mind. In a child’s power to master the multiplication table, there is more sanctity than in all your shouted ‘amens’ and ‘holy holies’ and ‘hosannas.’ An idea is a greater monument than a cathedral. And the advance of man’s knowledge is a greater miracle than all the sticks turned to snakes or the parting of the waters.

    If I became an atheist can I become as pretentious as you? Please?

  119. #119 Bryant
    July 26, 2008

    Hyperdeath #45:

    Kudos for the Doctor Who quote (Even if it was unintentional).

    Also, Meyers, this is my first time commenting during this entire thing, but I just want to say that it’s truly inspiring that you didn’t give in to the threats of the insane loons. Well, that said, why would you, their just idiots with no brain-mouth filter.

  120. #120 jorge666
    July 26, 2008

    Right now http://www.catholic.org is giving out FREE e-mail accounts/addresses with fairly complete e-mail services. Be the first one on your block! Just think of impressing your friends and neighbors by using n@cathoic.org, one of the most violent and hateful organizations known to man. Only those coveted e-mail addresses from the KKK or Stormfront impress people more.

    I wouldn’t send any e-mail to PZ from here though….

  121. #121 Todd
    July 26, 2008

    You should do more reading then.

    So should you.

    Also,that should be m-o-n-a-s-t-e-r-y.

    Yes it should. Thanks for the red herring.

  122. #122 jorge666
    July 26, 2008

    #120
    Oops, I guess it should be n@catholic.org….
    Oh Well.

  123. #123 black wolf
    July 26, 2008

    #69
    Good idea. The perfect book to show someone who claims that no Catholics believe in Hellish torture anymore, that their faith removes all hate, that Jesus inspires to love and all that.
    I know that it’s not a representative elicitation, but it definitely disproves the first claim, and will give pause to all those who have a naively benign view of their peers in faith. It is very dangerous having a huge, global organization concerned primarily with morality, highly respected for their traditional role in history and scholarship, subsidized by many governments – and extremely overrating the education level and more importantly the ethical standard of behavior and manners of expression of its average members.
    On one hand, it may be that the 12,000 hate mails you received were from the dregs of Catholicism. But on the other, as people familiar with the use of the internet and email procedures still tend to be more than averagely educated, I think it probable that a large portion were from people regarded as normal, friendly and moral members of their church, in unawareness of how they change character when in private.
    It wouldn’t surprise me if you found that whole congregations had written hate mail en bloc, given how effectively Donohue directed their herd mentality.
    Speaking of whom, has Donohue challenged PZ to a written, personal or public discussion of the cracker incident? Or is he merely exhibiting the typical passive-aggressive mode of behavior by letting his minions do the outraging and complaining?
    PZ, would you let Donohue punch you in public for the cause? ;)

  124. #124 Nick Gotts
    July 26, 2008

    Kind of like atheists denying the atheist atrocities of the 20th century as “not true atheism”. – Baba

    How many times does it need to be pointed out that there is no atheist organisation to which you must belong to be an atheist, no authority to which all atheists defer? There is no church of atheism or atheist party.
    The opposite is true of Catholics: no-one is a Catholic unless the Church accepts them as such, and they proudly proclaim the historical continuity, unified authority structure and achievements of the Church, using them as justification for their claims for respect. The Catholic Church, like all organisations, must take responsibility for everything in its own history; the corresponding body in Stalin’s case is presumably the Communist Party of Russia, the main heir to the Soviet Communist Party. Take your justified horror of Stalin out on them.

    Admit it – Stalin was just as capable rational thought as you.

    On the contrary, I admit no such thing. Stalin was severely damaged psychologically by a dreadful childhood, part of which was “education” in a brutal and obscurantist Orthodox seminary. He emerged from this as intensely ambitious, apparently conscienceless, and particularly liable to paranoia. He was thus drawn to the most ruthless of the Russian opposition factions, the Bolsheviks. The Bolsheviks were atheists, but so were most of the rest of the opposition, who were persecuted under Stalin – as indeed were almost all the original Bolsheviks. Once in power, Stalin was surrounded by yes-men, and like all long-term political leaders, especially dictators, became detached from reality because no-one dared tell him uncomfortable truths. Although Stalin was clever and cunning, that he was frequently far from capable of rational thought is shown by the immense damage he did to Soviet agriculture and society by forced collectivisation, to the Red Army by his purges of senior offices in the 1930s, and to Soviet science by his support of Lysenko’s nonsense; by his failure to heed the abundant warnings that Hitler was about to attack the USSR in 1941; and by the manufactured “doctors’ plot” of his last year.

  125. #125 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    There can be no doubt of the strong correlation between rabid religiosity and the inability to form a rational sentence with properly spelled words.

    Then guys like this must belong to the 21% of dis-believers who believe in a higher power.

    #92 Like the balls?

    #83 Can someone please punch Sandi in the cunt?

  126. #126 WA
    July 26, 2008

    Neural T, #117 – that’s pretty much what I wrote in my own blog response to it. :) I completely agree.

  127. #127 Anton Mates
    July 26, 2008
    The individual human mind. In a child’s power to master the multiplication table, there is more sanctity than in all your shouted ‘amens’ and ‘holy holies’ and ‘hosannas.’ An idea is a greater monument than a cathedral. And the advance of man’s knowledge is a greater miracle than all the sticks turned to snakes or the parting of the waters.

    If I became an atheist can I become as pretentious as you? Please?

    Quoting Inherit the Wind is pretentious? Damn, you guys set the “high culture” bar low these days, don’t you?

  128. #128 Rayven Alandria
    July 26, 2008

    Oh, I forgot to add…

    PZ, I think they keep calling you a Jew because they can’t imagine any under six foot 3 inch tall white man with a beard as anything other than a Jew.

    But they aren’t a bunch of frikkin’ racists or nothin’

    *rolls eyes*

  129. #129 Alcari
    July 26, 2008

    @ 103

    True, but his home phonenumber is bound to have more effect then a cellphone.

    For those with slightly more malicious intent, mr. Larrimore has left quite a trail online.

  130. #130 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    uh, no. Stalin was quite possibly, actually probably truly an atheist. The point is, he didn’t use atheism as a REASON for killing people.
    Many people have been killed FOR god or Allah. The people Staling had killed he had killed simply to stay in power. If he could have had a better hold on power by proclaiming himself Pope, that;s what he would have done.

    Why do you believe in fantasies?

  131. #131 John C. Welch
    July 26, 2008

    She can’t stop, can she?

    Oh, well, at least I had fewer errors than Myers.

    Not if we’re talking on a cumulative basis. That sentence had an extraneous comma. Unless you were caught by surprise, and were desperately trying to come up with a distraction, I think you really wanted to say:

    “Oh well, at least I had fewer errors than Myers.”

    See? Remove the comma, the meaning changes. I’m also unsure about your claim to “fewer errors” than P.Z.

    Myers: As for your rant the other day against Catholics (“The Great Desecration”),

    Parentheses are unnecessary here. Simply enclose the quotation in commas. In addition, on the internet, when referencing another posting, it is considered correct to properly link to the referenced posting. So the first part should be:

    Myers: As for your rant the other day against Catholics, “The Great Desecration“,

    See? It’s more clean, and properly references the named post.

    let me make the following observation: you’re like Rip Van Winkle. Most of your rant involved the year 1310 and the Middle Ages.

    You’re now up to two colons in the same sentence. Sentences, like people, should have no more than one colon. I realize that due to your life’s calling two colons, one each for web and toilet, seem like a godsend, but really, do try to only use one. In fact, you could have rewritten that initial sentence as:

    “Myers: As for your rant the other day against Catholics, “The Great Desecration“, you come off sounding like Rip Van Winkle.”

    See? Same meaning, but only one colon, no extraneous parentheses, shorter, and more to the point. However, I’m unsure as to the validity of Rip Van Winkle. PZ is not unaware of the passage of time since the Middle Ages, and the attendent changes in human behavior. You would perhaps be better off to use a simile that compares him to someone who instead, insists on living in the past, never able to come to terms with things as they are now. I know! The Pope! Perfect example of someone unable to deal with modern reality!

    Of course, the irony in a Catholic, whose religion has created a booming tourist industry off of living in the past, castigating someone else for supposedly doing so is rich. But then, hypocrisy and Catholicism are old friends.

    We are now in the year 2008–perhaps you didn’t get the memo?

    Double dashes? Really? Allow me to borrow from your overfull cup of wit: We are well out of the typewriter era. There is this lurvely concept known as the em dash. Do try to keep up with things, or you look as hopelessly stuck in the past as you accuse PZ of being. In addition, I question the use of even an em dash here. I realize you wanted to accentuate 2008, but there are better ways to do that, perhaps with the use of our good friend, the bold tag:

    “We are now in the year 2008, perhaps you didn’t get the memo?”

    You drive home the point of the sentence, and it now flows better. No overlong pauses to stumble over.

    Talk about holding a long grudge! Maybe you’re compensating for your, ahem, shortcomings in other areas.

    A Catholic bitching about holding a long grudge? Wow…that’s amazing. I know you’re afraid of hell, so your boldness in openly courting it here is astounding.

    However, penis insults? That’s so inane, I feel forced to ask: What are you, 12?

    I think it’s clear though, that if you’re trying to claim some high moral ground vs. P.Z., perhaps spelling and grammar are not the best tactics for you. I recommend something better suited to your background. Maybe sitting in a closet, with your eyes closed, index fingers firmly in ears, shouting “LALALALALALAICAN’THEARYOU”.

  132. #132 BobC
    July 26, 2008

    Jim RL (#109),

    I think we share a similar history. I was Catholic, and I mostly believed all the myths, but I don’t think I took it as seriously as some other Catholics. For example in Catholic grammar school, after a nun spent one hour telling us we’re all going to hell, I thought the nun was nuts, and I had to reassure a friend of mine he wasn’t going to hell, even though he was the sort of person the nun was talking about.

  133. #133 Naked Bunny with a Whip
    July 26, 2008

    I used to think it was bizarre that Catholics oppose abortion because they can’t tell the difference between a baby and an embryo. But now that I discover they can’t tell the difference between a person and a piece of bread, I guess it’s not quite as bizarre.

  134. #134 JHJEFFERY
    July 26, 2008

    STOP IT, PEOPLE!

    I TOLD YOU BEFORE, WAIT TILL THE THREE DAYS RUNS TO SEE IF IT COMES BACK TO LIFE. NEVER ASSUME ANYTHING! YOU’RE PLAYING WITH FIRE!

  135. #135 Neural T
    July 26, 2008

    Kind of like atheists denying the atheist atrocities of the 20th century as “not true atheism”. – Baba

    Atheists generally hold critical thought, open inquiry, and skepticism as ideals. The secular dictatorships and totalitarian regimes of the 20th Century, so often cited as examples of “atheist atrocity,” share the following features: dogmatism, uncritical allegiance to a leader or group, lack of inquiry, a controlled press, strict laws, strong punishment against transgressors, and so on. In other words, the same features that extreme forms of religion have in common. Those despotic regimes had a lot more in common with religion, from Muslim Sharia law to Middle Age Catholicism, than the democratic humanist philosophy espoused by most atheists.

  136. #136 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    As I have stated about 5 billion times already, Atheism has no church, no creed, no bylaws, no philosophy. No Atheist has anything to do with any other Atheist. I have no more to do with Stalin than I have to do with some random green eyed lady from days gone by. It is so utterly bizarre that you people cannot escape the concept of group thinking.

    And anyone who disagrees with your historically inaccurate assertions will not be tolerated.

    Whether or not Stalin was an Atheist is irrelevant. He was an evil human. By your logic we are all responsible for him because we are all humans, or perhaps only men who shared his physical traits are responsible, or people who were of a certain height he was, or weighed exactly the same amount he did, or, or, or…..

    Actually, it’s your logic.

  137. #137 Rey Fox
    July 26, 2008

    “I wonder how many of these whack-jobs will now turn around and join in the “Official Pray for PZ Myers Month.”

    If I were PZ, I’d be worried about the upcoming month. I mean, we all know how those intercessionary prayer studies turned out.

  138. #138 Nick Gotts
    July 26, 2008

    Baba@130,

    How much have you read about Stalin? You’re clearly an expert, where do you derive your expertise from?

  139. #139 craig
    July 26, 2008

    “If I became an atheist can I become as pretentious as you? Please? “

    What’s more pretentious than thinking the universe was created for you? And that the magical guy who created it created you in his image? And that unlike all other life forms, when YOU die, you won’t actually die – because you’re just too special to be like the other life forms?

    Man created religion so that they could pretend to have godlike powers themselves.

  140. #140 Neural T
    July 26, 2008

    In other words, in the despotic secular regimes of the 20th Century, there were sacred things. We open, democratic, humanistic atheists rail against sacred things.

  141. #141 blf
    July 26, 2008

    James@55, I agree, the split infinitive nonsense is one of the alleged english “mistakes” which not only isn’t one, its origin is, as you say, a language that has, at best, a very indirect relationship to english. There’s a number of other “rules” with the same bullshite origin (as I recall, the double negative is another?), but for some reason, it’s the claim that split infinitives are bad that really gets my goat.

    (Apologies for any spelling errors. For some reason the spellchecker thinks all words are mispelt ( ;-) ) … sighs–ah, wait a moment, I see why, for some reason my default dictionary is Deutsch! Hum… debugging time!

  142. #142 Michael X
    July 26, 2008

    A favorite logical fallacy of mine is when someone appeals to authority, and decides to make that authority themselves. Saves you from citing evidence, and makes you forever and automatically right.

    I have yet to see any evidence that Stalin did anything out of the principles of Atheism. Mainly, because there are none. It is a negation. Atheism is not prescriptive. I get so tired of educating the religious on the simplest of ideas.

  143. #143 Naked Bunny with a Whip
    July 26, 2008

    I thought you guys learned your lesson in the Krollateral damage episode.

    The lesson, as it turned out, is that a hateful liar got fired from her job for letting her equally hateful husband send death threats through her work email account.

    That said, there is no way I’d call that number. Using a false phone number/website/email address if the oldest griefing trick in the book.

  144. #144 Jors
    July 26, 2008

    From Carl Sagan’s 1994 keynote address to CSICOP:

    What I’m trying to say is that the one deficiency which I see in the skeptical movement is an “us” verses “them.” A sense that we have a monopoly on the truth, those other people who believe in all these stupid doctrines are morons…or worse, and that…if you’re sensible you’ll listen to us, if not, to hell with you.

    That is non-constructive. That does not get our message across. That condemns us to permanent minority status. Whereas, an approach which from the beginning acknowledges the human roots of these problems understands that the society has arranged things…for very good reasons that skepticism is not well taught.

    By very good reasons I mean very good reasons for the protection of those in power. If skepticism is well understood, then who’s the skepticism going to be applied to except those in power. Those in power do not have a vested interest in everybody being able to ask searching questions.

    If we understand that then we have compassion to the abductees [persons who claim to have been abducted by aliens] and those who, startled, come upon crop circles and believe that they are supernatural, and then we have a much better chance of succeeding.

    I think it is key for us to make science and the scientific method more attractive, especially to the young. Because that’s a battle for the future.

    This is taken from around the 1:36 mark in the recording found here: http://www.pointofinquiry.org/ann_druyan_science_wonder_and_spirituality/

    I recommend listening to the whole speech before disagreeing with Sagan.

  145. #145 kryptonic
    July 26, 2008

    thickslab #83

    Can someone please punch Sandi in the cunt?

    Like this?

  146. #146 Colin
    July 26, 2008

    None of us implies “not one of us.” Hence, you should say, “None of us has…”

    Haha. So apparently it’s also correct to say “None of the strawberries is ripe”? I mean seriously, it takes about three seconds of thought to realize that this “none of us”=singular rule makes no sense.

  147. #147 Evolving Squid
    July 26, 2008

    I am a Catholic Christian, I would like to desacrate your fat ass. I know that I shouldn’t feel that way,

    No homoerotica there. Could he be repressing something?

  148. #148 anthropic
    July 26, 2008

    A challenge to the religious:

    Just try this. Take a sabbatical for a decent period of time (maybe 6 months to a year) and truly try to open you mind to rational thought. You’re not going to the dark side. You’re just being a rational human being willing to look at facts. And hold yourself to that. Really examine evidence as if your life depended on it.

    When faced with something you’d ordinarily say “goddunit” to, dig a bit deeper. Ask yourself if there could possibly be other expalantions. Keep Occam’s razor in mind throughout.

    Read a physics book. A book on chemistry. A book on cosmology. And certainly, a really good book on evolutionary biology (such as The Ancestors Tale). Just do it as an earnest experiment.

    Then, wite down questions about things you don’t understand. And rather than drawing conclusions, talk about it with folks who understand the area.

    Just try it. How could t possibly hurt?

    BTW, I tried the religious route early in life, all the way through a Catholic University. I found no answers there, only ancient dogma and mindless gibberish. But I tried. I really, really tried.

  149. #149 craig
    July 26, 2008

    “Why do you believe in fantasies?”

    I believe in the existence of fantasies because I see plenty of evidence that other people have them, and I have them myself. My fantasies are pretty mundane though, just your run of the mill sexual fantasies, and daydreams of writing better music than I’m currently capable of writing.
    I certainly don’t have “I’m important to the whole universe and I will never die” fantasies.

    Most importantly, I know that my fantasies are fantasies. Having fantasies is healthy and sane.

    Having fantasies and thinking they’re real, making religions out of them and demanding that nobody nurst your bubble – that’s insane.

  150. #150 scooter
    July 26, 2008

    I know I am inviting some flame but seriously, I find this rather touching. Pray for PZ Myers Month

    Yeah I know it’s goofy and superstitious, but it is nevertheless a positive sentiment, and more in line with the Catholics I have worked with, who are certainly a small minority.

    I have worked with Catholics and Mary Knolls, and Catholic Workers Party people doing war resistance work, and they are very, very impressive people, and really work their asses off, and get arrested a lot, too.

    There are Catholics and Christians out there who actually walk the walk.

    When I interviewed PZ he pointed out that it was important for all progressives and liberals of all faiths or not to unite behind humanistic ideals.

    Just my two cents of the moment
    ———-
    PZ Interview

  151. #151 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Quoting Inherit the Wind is pretentious? Damn, you guys set the “high culture” bar low these days, don’t you?

    More like a low pretentious tolerance. Plus I haven’t seen much evidence that men’s (or women’s) minds are being advanced much around here.

    Hey #121 Wikipedia is the Truth, the Light and the Way. We should all bow to the authority of the Great Wiki.

  152. #152 mary 77
    July 26, 2008

    This has been a heck of an education in hate. PZ, you are such the mensch to deal with this and to post. I am a sephard jew, and I recognize the rape, fires, burning in hell threats with which I grew up in SW OH–for having a family history & artifact. Not good press for catholic pr considering their priest problem of recent years. For the thoughtful, we learn, don’t we?

  153. #153 Capital Dan
    July 26, 2008

    I do so very much love the embarrassment Christianity has suffered as a result of all this cracker nonsense. It’s astounding that they can sit there demanding we respect them in one breath while barking out such vile, bat-shit insanity in another.

    Seriously, religious addiction is clearly a very destructive thing. These people actually think those emails are perfectly fine and dandy. They kiss their kids in the morning, and sit down to spew such vicious, hate-filled, intolerant nonsense in defense of a fucking cracker.

    I love how you hit a nerve with this all, PZ. You showed them that, in the minds of rational human beings, their beliefs are to be held no higher or lower than any others. And, as a result, they are terrified and struggling to make sense of it all.

  154. #154 jorge666
    July 26, 2008

    #129 Alcari

    For those with slightly more malicious intent, mr. Larrimore has left quite a trail online.

    Just like the Krolls. A family that preys together stays together, right?

    **See MKroll’s post in support of her looney tunes spouse. Although just to be fair many observers just saw the symptoms of the battered spouse syndrome.

  155. #155 wookerist
    July 26, 2008

    (+)

  156. #156 Pygmy Loris
    July 26, 2008

    I haven’t read the whole thread, so I’m sure someone else already said this, but what is with all these Catholics accusing PZ of pedophilia? Is fear of Hell the only reason they’re not molesting children?

  157. #157 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    How much have you read about Stalin? You’re clearly an expert, where do you derive your expertise from?

    Wikipedia.

  158. #158 Rayven Alandria
    July 26, 2008
    Written by Rayven: As I have stated about 5 billion times already, Atheism has no church, no creed, no bylaws, no philosophy. No Atheist has anything to do with any other Atheist. I have no more to do with Stalin than I have to do with some random green eyed lady from days gone by. It is so utterly bizarre that you people cannot escape the concept of group thinking.
    ________________________________

    And anyone who disagrees with your historically inaccurate assertions will not be tolerated.
    __________________________________

    Written by Rayven: Whether or not Stalin was an Atheist is irrelevant. He was an evil human. By your logic we are all responsible for him because we are all humans, or perhaps only men who shared his physical traits are responsible, or people who were of a certain height he was, or weighed exactly the same amount he did, or, or, or…..

    ___________________

    Actually, it’s your logic.
    ________________________

    Posted by: Baba

    Then prove it. Prove we Atheists have a creed or philosophy. Prove to me what all Atheist believe beyond the obvious (there is no god). Other than that tell me what all Atheist believe, and prove it. Prove to me I am responsible for Stalin.

    I’m waiting.

  159. #159 Jay
    July 26, 2008

    I’d love to see a study showing a correlation between one’s religiosity and one’s ability to spell correctly.

  160. #160 arensb
    July 26, 2008

    If I may toot my own horn, a friend of mine points out that if you google “Rick Delano troll”, my site comes up as the #2 hit. (It’s the #1 hit if you google “Rick Delano twatwaffle”.)

  161. #161 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    I believe in the existence of fantasies because I see plenty of evidence that other people have them, and I have them myself. My fantasies are pretty mundane though, just your run of the mill sexual fantasies, and daydreams of writing better music than I’m currently capable of writing.
    I certainly don’t have “I’m important to the whole universe and I will never die” fantasies.

    Most importantly, I know that my fantasies are fantasies. Having fantasies is healthy and sane.

    You sound boring.

  162. #162 Rayven Alandria
    July 26, 2008

    Hey, my quote tags messed up again. I know I put them in the right spots. Odd.

    Maybe I’d better slow down and stop listening to a radio talk show while typing.

  163. #163 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Atheists generally hold critical thought, open inquiry, and skepticism as ideals.

    I’m skeptical.

  164. #164 Christophe Thill
    July 26, 2008

    So, PZ, you have a Jewish ascendency you’ve never heard of? OK, so maybe you’ll be interested in the story I’ve managed to gather. It goes like this:

    Back in the end of the 13th century, there was a Jew called Jonathas who lived rue des Billettes, in Paris, where he worked as a moneylender (not a lot of other activities were allowed to Jews). One day, a woman came to him: she wished to recover a gown she had left with him, but had no money to get it back. So in exchange, he asked her to bring him a consecrated communion wafer. She accepted (“like Judas”, the old text says). She put the wafer under her tongue, came back to his house and gave it to him.

    Jonathas took the wafer and started to stab it with his knife, and blood began to flow. His wife and children came and begged him to stop, but he carried on. He tried to break the wafer in pieces, but he could not; it only bled some more. Seeing he could not destroy it, he threw it in a cauldron full of boiling water, but the wafer rose above the water, and Jesus appeared.

    Meanwhile, Jonathas’ son was in the street, and he saw groups of people passing by. He asked them where they were going, and they said they were going to church to adore God. The child replied that it wasn’t worth it, because he must surely be dead by now, seeing how his father was stabbing him hard. A woman heard the conversation and went to the house carrying a wooden platter, so she could pretend she came to ask for something for her cooking. When she entered the kitchen, she saw the flying wafer; she made the sign of the cross, and the wafer came to rest in her platter. She took it with her and brought it to a church.

    Jonathas was denounced and sentenced to death. Before his execution, he asked for a book that was supposed to help him escape death. But he and his book burned very quickly. After that, his house was destroyed, a church was built at its place, and years later, the knife and the wooden platter were still shown as relics. People familiarly called nicknamed the street “the one where God was boiled”. A passion play called “The mystery of the holy host” was written and often represented; the text still exists.

    Now, the story was undoubtably told and repeated around these basic events. But it is very difficult to know what really happened. A Jew stealing a host and trying to destroy it is a ridiculous tale with zero credibility, but at the time, people believed it happened regularly.

    The good thing is that, while the church exists, and while it it said that it was built on the site of a house belonging to a Jew, it doesn’t seem that such a man was actually put to death. My personal opinion, as a non-historian and non-specialist, is that the details of the story were cooked up by the Church in order to impress the faithful.

  165. #165 Rayven Alandria
    July 26, 2008

    Like I said Baba, prove it. Prove we Atheists have a creed or philosophy. Prove to me what all Atheist believe beyond the obvious (there is no god). Other than that tell me what all Atheist believe, and prove it. Prove to me I am responsible for Stalin.

    We are still waiting for the evidence. If you have none, then perhaps the conversation is over.

  166. #166 gb
    July 26, 2008

    Perhaps batch forward the 12000 emails(and what the subsequent filters capture) to the vatican website, a local bishop or one of those red cardinal guys? Perhaps somebody there might notice the state of catholicism that Bill Donahue and his minions practice? Will the papal bull slap Donahue upside the head, condemn the posters who’s actions run contrary to teachings or will they say nothing, and in doing so, reveal the hypocrisy of their ineffective authority.

  167. #167 Logicel
    July 26, 2008

    Doov, #64, Ah, yes, the delectably descriptive mook. Oh my, how I missed using that one! Thanks for jogging my memory and here’s that hysterically funny mook scene from Mean Streets: http://youtube.com/watch?v=JmrQ70gJUJI

    Sandi, It seems that it is you who have not received the memo that we are at present in 2008. Try reading books that at least have been written last century.

  168. #168 Pete M.
    July 26, 2008

    @144

    So, I like Sagan. How can you not like Sagan? The quote you’ve put up also reflects a fine sentiment: let’s not blame the victims.

    However, I keep laughing to myself because it strikes me as a kind of reverse concern-trolling. Sagan was always ahead of his time.

    So, who wants to go frequent some religious sites with me and let them know how very sorry we are that they aren’t capable of thinking rationally, through no fault of their own, but because they’ve been indoctrinated into ancient mystical cults. *sighs beautifically*

  169. #169 horse-pheathers
    July 26, 2008

    I just posted the following over at the “month of prayer” blog (mentioned in WA’s post, #59):

    Hi all….

    Just for the record, the stated reason Professor Myers went through the trouble was in protest of certain aspects of the Catholic reaction to the Webster Cook incident at UCF. Cook has received death threats for taking a consecrated host from a service (which he later returned), and there’s an ongoing attempts to have him expelled from the school.

    Peace to you,

    - Pheathers

    Let’s see how long it lasts.

  170. #170 Felicia
    July 26, 2008

    Oh man, I actually feel sort of bad for the guy who gave out his phone number. The Internet is a merciless place, afterall.

    So, should I plan my wardrobe for the brunch tomorrow around body armor? :)

  171. #171 IceFarmer
    July 26, 2008

    My aunt yelled about me about all this. She is a very staunch Sunday Catholic mother. She gets even angrier when she decides to “discuss” her beliefs with my and I disagree. My stepfather (great guy) told her that she should get the scientist guy (PZ) and Bishop Humpachild (member of Catholic clergy) together to discuss this issue on TV. You think PZ has had some hateful things sent his way? Wow. She is certain that everyone, except her, will rot in hell. Funny how that seems to work.

    I love coming here and reading stuff about science & kooks. Especially when I’m having a slow ass day at work. I almost sh*t myself laughing at my desk! Keep it up PZ. They keep showing their true colors.

  172. #172 Anonymous
    July 26, 2008

    @170 Oh man, I actually feel sort of bad for the guy who gave out his phone number. The Internet is a merciless place, afterall.

    Should anyone be interested in some information on Mr Larrimore, send a mail to:
    DoxOnLarrimore@mailinator.com

    Or do your own digging, it’s not that hard.

  173. #173 craig
    July 26, 2008

    “You sound boring.”

    Better boring than delusional.

  174. #174 AJ Milne
    July 26, 2008

    I’m skeptical.

    Vapid.

  175. #175 WA
    July 26, 2008

    Scooter, #150:

    I know I am inviting some flame but seriously, I find this rather touching. Pray for PZ Myers Month

    This is not meant as flame, because you’re entitled to your opinion, and I can understand why it would appear touching, kind and generous.

    I would agree, except for the fact that these Christians who are walking the walk are not taking the time to understand the message PZ was trying to get out. Instead of trying to have a discussion with the other side, they chalk “The Great Desecration” and its supporters up to hate, Satan, whatever. Then they turn to the man in the sky to make it all go away. They may do it out of a perceived love for fellow man, but a true love would be to understand opposing viewpoints instead of wishing for some miraculous turn of everyone’s thought to match their own.

    For those of you who want to argue this, I’ll just say now: no, I don’t think PZ’s actions are analogous to what I’m saying about Christians. He used reason and logic to make a point, and engage their minds, so they might consider something from a new perspective and decide for themselves. Obviously, many have made the decision to continue believing what they choose. The Christians who will devote their prayer time to PZ would rather have a supernatural being just change his mind, just flip it right over to their side. Whether or not it can actually be done is irrelevant. They believe it can, and they’re employing a dirty technique.

    That’s just how I see it…

  176. #176 craig
    July 26, 2008

    It’s looking like the Baba troll is running out of steam.

  177. #177 Matt Pickard
    July 26, 2008

    Well, think of it this way, PZ – all of this will make for an interesting chapter in a book – if you ever decide to write one.

  178. #178 David Marjanovi?, OM
    July 26, 2008

    Myers: You shouldn’t complain about proofreading when you have such a poor command of the English language yourself. To wit: “I’m offended by you, but none of us have a right to not be offended.” None of us implies “not one of us.” Hence, you should say, “None of us has…” (Incidentally, you also have a split infinitive.) You see, its only a smart idea to pontificate when you know what the hell you’re talking about.

    You are the one you doesn’t know what they’re talking about.*

    “None” is both singular and plural. It can be used as the literal translation of both aucun/aucune (sg.) and aucuns/aucunes (French), keiner/keine/kein and keine (German), and so on.

    The ability, not to mention the occasional necessity, to “split infinitives” is what sets English apart from, say, German. (“To boldly go” translates into German as kühn dorthinzugehen, literally “boldly there-to-go”.) Be sure to follow the link in comment 52.

    Where did you little know-it-all learn linguistics? Did you ever learn linguistics? (Is that a rhetorical question?)

    * And, yes, singular they is another English peculiarity that appears in Shakespeare, Chaucer, and the King James Bible. Well, it’s less peculiar than split infinitives, because it also occurs in Biblical Greek and Biblical Hebrew, but you get the idea.

    Hey, Sandi shouldn’t that be “…it’s only a smart idea…”.

    You see, “its” is the possessive form of “it”, and you wish to use the contraction of “it is”. Well done.

    No, this is not Sandi’s own fault. As I’m sure you know, the Bierce-Hartman-McKean-Skitt Law of Prescriptivist Retaliation states that any article or statement about correct grammar, punctuation, or spelling is bound to contain at least one eror. :-)

    It’s one of the things which makes English better than those other languages – along with the bolt-together-a-tense kit which makes convoluted Doctor Who scenarios possible to describe.

    The first half of this sentence is sort of like Homer Simpson’s famous saying “To alcohol — the origin and the solution of all of life’s problems” (warning: I’m retranslating from German here, I don’t know the original). Sure, there are situations where (see above) splitting infinitives is necessary in English, but that doesn’t mean that other languages can’t deal with that in other ways, just that English can’t.

    The second half also applies (at the very least) to German, which (see above) doesn’t split infinitives, and by “doesn’t” I mean that no native speaker would ever get the idea of trying it, no matter how uneducated.

    Incidentally, Jim RL (comment 54), the infinitive is not a tense. (I don’t know where the word tense comes from; other languages just use “time”, and while that’s an oversimplification, it does make people get the fact that present, past, future and the like are tenses, while infinitive, passive and so on are not.)

    ———————————–

    Kind of like atheists denying the atheist atrocities of the 20th century as “not true atheism”. Admit it – Stalin was just as capable rational thought as you.

    Capable? He was clinically paranoid… his atrocities were motivated by that paranoia combined with communism. Communism behaved like a religion: holy infallible scriptures, infallible prophets, belief in supernatural forces (inevitable march of progress and the like)… and we know what religions do to each other when they are allowed to.

  179. #179 scooter
    July 26, 2008

    #108 In reference to the call for Donahue’s resignation.

    Putting together last week program with an extended Hit peice on BillyBoy I ran across some hysterically funny material from Kathy Griffin, another recent victim of Donahue.

    Quote: ‘Then I discovered that the CATHOLIC LEAGUE is one guy and a computer’

    It’s probably Bill Donahue, a webmaster and maybe an intern.

    Knowing this, reading Catholic League press releases are particularly hysterical. But also calling for Donahue’s resignation is equally humorous.
    —————————

    Bill Donahue pwn3d

  180. #180 craig
    July 26, 2008

    Personally I think it’s pretty dumb to call the number, etc.
    Just because one person’s an asshole harasser doesn’t mean we have to do it back… and also, it’s entirely possible for someone to pull a prank by sending nasty emails to people using their enemies’ names and/or phone numbers.

    I sure wouldn’t like to start getting bunches of upset phone calls and emails and reports to police or whatever because my neighbor decided to get back at me for complaining that he was burning leaves or something.

  181. #181 Jeb, FCD
    July 26, 2008

    Maybe he (Baba) is kissing Sandi when the other guy wanted to punch her.

  182. #182 wildlifer
    July 26, 2008

    These folks give a whole new meaning to the phrase “crackerhead”.

  183. #183 Jeb, FCD
    July 26, 2008

    That should read “…where the other guy…”

  184. #184 WA
    July 26, 2008

    You sound boring.

    Nice to see that the Alex McRae tactic is really starting to pick up steam. It’s really oh-so-effective in proving any point.

  185. #185 JoJo
    July 26, 2008

    Leave poor Larrimore alone. The guy has enough problems dealing with homoerotic impulses that his church tells him are sinful.

  186. #186 Michael X
    July 26, 2008

    Baba is a troll. Enough posts have been made to make this clear. His opinions may be relegated to the rubbish bin. Maybe if Baba really wished to challenge us he’d be kind enough to send us someone who actually engaged in conversation. Much less someone who kept from stating outdated and tired arguments like they were some coup de grace.

  187. #187 Jim RL
    July 26, 2008

    BobC, that sounds pretty similiar. As I got older I really tried to get skeptical side and my faith side to co-exist. I would seriously ponder questions like “when did the soul evolve?” I wanted to live in a rational universe that also supported the myths I was taught.

    I may not have been as rational as you because our 6th grade teacher scared the hell out of me. She told us that people could seriously sell their souls to the devil and go to hell for it. My parents were going through a rough patch, and there was talk of divorce. They worked things out, and I remember laying in bed scared that I had sold my soul to get them to stay together. I didn’t remember selling my soul, but the devil could make me forget. I would have probably requested it. What would he care?

  188. #188 Sili
    July 26, 2008

    I guess it’s a small blessing that Kerry didn’t reach the Whitehouse. Otherwise the poor fellow’d likely be asked to comment on this tempest in a teapot (scirocco in a chalice?).

  189. #189 the strangest brew
    July 26, 2008

    By attacking Atheism with what they regard as wit and sarcasm they are attempting to distract and gloss over the point that has so well been illustrated recently…that Roman Catholicism is the most blood thirstiest and evil of all Magisteriums.

    A quick glance at the messages these little heroes leave behind like dog shit just stinks of fear and basic ignorance.

    It is more then enough to classify them as hate lovers, they just love to hate and threaten, bullies and sycophantic sexually inadequate cowards always like to pretend moral superiority, and when that fails they try to blame and accuse their protagonists of exhibiting precisely the same traits as they have.

    But it is the way that they have been taught and grilled in the cult…lie, distort and lie again, if that fails claim religious intolerance, and pretend hurt innocence.

  190. #190 Breakfast
    July 26, 2008

    Ahaha. I laughed myself silly at the amoeba guy, but PZ’s reply at #23 really sent me over the edge.

  191. #191 Rayven Alandria
    July 26, 2008

    Like I said Baba, prove it. Prove we Atheists have a creed or philosophy. Prove to me what all Atheist believe beyond the obvious (there is no god). Other than that tell me what all Atheist believe, and prove it. Prove to me I am responsible for Stalin.

    We are still waiting for the evidence. If you have none, then perhaps the conversation is over.

    Take note minions, the next time a troll starts the Stalin/Hitler.etc…shit, just ask them to do this. *points up*
    They cannot comply. They will ignore our demand, but if we keep posting it over and over and refuse further dialog, they will go away.

    …..or mention tacos. They seem to calm down and start being peaceful if you mention tacos. It must be their favorite food. (and they like to trade recipes, that’s kind of cool, so they aren’t all bad)

  192. #192 deadman_932
    July 26, 2008

    Odd. I typed in “Jason Larrimore Thomasville, AL” into Google and got an entirely different phone number.

    ** Not that I would ever harass poor dim Jason, or his family **

    Instead, a less direct approach:

    St. Joseph Parish
    West Front Street
    Thomasville, AL 36784

    Mailing Address: PO Box 70 Grove Hill, AL 36451

    Phone: 251-275-3665

    Might want to know if a parishoner is threatening other human beings.

    Nothing like the wrath/guilt of their own “god” and all that. Jason is a recent convert (apparently wife-driven) — and we all know about recent converts and their fanaticism

  193. #193 Pierce R. Butler
    July 26, 2008

    It strains credulity…

    And this coming from people with some of the biggest, densest, most thoroughly reinforced credulity on the planet!

    The email tally given by Prof. Myers seems a bit crudely categorized, in that the Christian section includes only “hate mail” and “reasonable”. Surely there were abundant messages speaking only of pity and prayer: those clearly don’t belong in the “reason” box, but while condescending to the point of insult, don’t quite qualify as “hate mail” either.

    However, I’m not volunteering to conduct the recount, and am a bit skeptical that our esteemed (ahem) host will do so either. The question of proper classification will have to wait until some aspiring scholar chronicles the christ-cracker crusade crisis for a thesis or dissertation.

  194. #194 Breakfast
    July 26, 2008

    Rayven, #191 — I don’t have time to get into an actual conversation about it, but being in the Christian worldview, you might be more inclined to expect people who reject it to have some sort of unified creed. To them the world is populated entirely by two groups: the saved and the unsaved. If you have somehow come to be a non-Christian then they have to expect there’s some reason for it, and furthermore that that reason is your fault, or the whole free-will-salvation-theodicy falls apart. Atheists are people who have rejected God and furthermore don’t even accept any other Christianity-esque creed like most other groups, so they must have some kind of big problem with him.

    Ok, it still doesn’t really make perfect sense to view atheists as a unified group from that angle, but you can at least see how they don’t grok atheism as a sort of neutral epistemic starting position in the way we’d be inclined to.

  195. #195 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Like I said Baba, prove it. Prove we Atheists have a creed or philosophy. Prove to me what all Atheist believe beyond the obvious (there is no god). Other than that tell me what all Atheist believe, and prove it. Prove to me I am responsible for Stalin.

    I’ll do no such thing! Don’t let others do your thinking for you, you must have a questioning mind.

    They will ignore our demand, but if we keep posting it over and over and refuse further dialog, they will go away.

    Apologies. I wasn’t ignoring you, I had to pray over supper.

  196. #196 craig
    July 26, 2008

    “Ok, it still doesn’t really make perfect sense to view atheists as a unified group from that angle, but you can at least see how they don’t grok atheism as a sort of neutral epistemic starting position in the way we’d be inclined to.”

    Well I learned from fstdt.com that the latest research indicates that atheists are actually a different sect of Muslims.

  197. #197 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Maybe he (Baba) is kissing Sandi when the other guy wanted to punch her.

    An example of the sophisticated advancing of the “the minds of men”.

    Vapid.

    Glad to see that we can agree on some things.

  198. #198 Michael X
    July 26, 2008

    Don’t feed the troll.

  199. #199 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Rayven, #191 — I don’t have time to get into an actual conversation about it, but being in the Christian worldview, you might be more inclined to expect people who reject it to have some sort of unified creed. To them the world is populated entirely by two groups: the saved and the unsaved.

    Don’t forget the fouls and offsides.

  200. #200 craig
    July 26, 2008

    Yep. Game over. 100% Troll.

  201. #201 AJ Milne
    July 26, 2008

    Glad to see that we can agree on some things.

    Look. Almost a sentence.

    (Yet still not a thought.)

  202. #202 KevinB
    July 26, 2008

    #131 reminds me of http://xkcd.com/406/

  203. #203 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Better boring than delusional.

    Prove it!

  204. #204 Rayven Alandria
    July 26, 2008

    Awwwww…Isn’t it cute how they try to excuse why they don’t answer direct questions? The troll claims he doesn’t have time? LOL, too funny. He has time to post message after message of the same tired nonsense but he doesn’t have time for an original thought.

    How many times has Wowbanger asked the trolls to answer the direct question he keeps asking them about the policy of the church in regards to sex crimes? They refuse to answer.

    Perhaps we should ask them direct questions which they refuse to answer and refuse further discussion.

  205. #205 scooter
    July 26, 2008

    What, then, am I to do with this bag of Bits ‘n’ Bytes Troll Food ?

    It keeps their coats shiny and fights troublesome Troll Breath.

    I paid alot of Pay Pals for this stuff, and it tastes terrible so I can’t eat it.

  206. #206 craig
    July 26, 2008

    “Prove it!”

    You already did.

  207. #207 Baba
    July 26, 2008


    Look. Almost a sentence.

    (Yet still not a thought.)

    Where?! Where?!

  208. #208 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    You already did

    Yawwwwn!!!!

  209. #209 Michael X
    July 26, 2008

    Our current troll has, despite himself, led me to a recurring thought. It is one that has shown itself quite commonly among those who repudiate PZ. Why when someone thinks “I hate ‘X’ type of behavior” do they then go on to react to it by behaving like ‘X’?

    I hate smarmy know-it-alls for example. How is it best to deal with them? Most of the people in opposition to PZ would apparently choose to act like a smarmy know-it-all.
    It really blows my mind. I know this is a blog heavy on biology, but I bet MAJeff (or any other qualified person) could take a crack at explaining the psychosis that underlies such contradictory, and morally stunted behavior. I really do wonder about it.

  210. #210 Jim Lippard
    July 26, 2008

    #179: scooter, the Catholic League is not just one guy and a computer, I’m afraid:

    http://www.catholicleague.org/about.php

    It has a board of directors, a chairman, and a vice president, and probably some additional staffers. There’s also a (probably powerless) board of advisors that includes some other well-known nutters like Brent Bozell III, Dinesh D’Souza, Alan Keyes, Thomas Monaghan, and Paul Vitz.

  211. #211 El Herring
    July 26, 2008

    I’m a bit late to this thread but craig #42 has it exactly right, in my opinion. Look at the big picture – the loftier and more complex the science, the less the general public will understand it. The divide between science and pseudo-science (and by extension, woo) is only going to get wider and wider as I see it. We have an ever harder task ahead of us to keep the depressing effects of this widening chasm to a minimum. PZ, Dawkins, Dennett and their ilk are doing an absolutely essential job, and deserve all the backing we can give them.

    And I’m not even a scientist. I’m a composer.

  212. #212 Michael X
    July 26, 2008

    Bits ‘n’ Bytes Troll Food?!?! Ok, you can feed the troll. But only one tiny bit at a time. it doesn’t seem to do well with more than that.

  213. #213 Benjamin Franklin
    July 26, 2008

    David Marjanovi?, OM @#178

    Thank you, David. None of us would have been able to explain it as well as you did. (Was that right?)

  214. #214 Baba
    July 26, 2008


    Awwwww…Isn’t it cute how they try to excuse why they don’t answer direct questions? The troll claims he doesn’t have time? LOL, too funny. He has time to post message after message of the same tired nonsense but he doesn’t have time for an original thought.

    How many times has Wowbanger asked the trolls to answer the direct question he keeps asking them about the policy of the church in regards to sex crimes? They refuse to answer.

    I hate that. I refuse to answer, you can torture me, pierce me with a nail and throw me in the Gulag, I will not talk.


    Perhaps we should ask them direct questions which they refuse to answer and refuse further discussion.

    Dastardly!! Yet characteristically uncreative of the atheists on this site.

  215. #215 Jim Lippard
    July 26, 2008

    If somebody starts up an “Atheist League” headed by someone who foams at the mouth in “defense” of atheism as much as Bill Donohue does in “defense” of Catholicism, will they get as much press coverage?

  216. #216 DingoDave
    July 26, 2008

    If anyone still hasn’t listened to the Webster Cook radio interview, you can find it at the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s, ‘Freethought Radio & Podcast’ – July 19, 2008
    here;
    http://ffrf.org/radio/podcast/
    The Webster Cook interview starts at about 18:30 minutes into the show.

    For those of you who either can’t, or don’t wish to listen to the interview, then here is a brief summary of Webster Cook’s version of events.

    But first, a little background information.
    As a condition for receiving funding from the student union, any religious organisations receiving such funding must allow any student to attend any of their events free of charge.
    Another condition for receiving funding is that any students attending any such events are in no way obliged to participate in the event, but may attend purely as observers.
    Students must also permitted to leave the event any time they wish.

    It appears that the person who really started this whole kerfuffle is a girl named Michelle Ducker (not sure about the spelling). During the mass she was bickering with, and chastising Webster Cook and his friend Bernie Collar for not standing and kneeling at the appropriate times during the service, and was annoyed and hostile about the questions which Bernie was asking Webster, and Webster’s answers to him. She insisted that if Cook and his friend did not participate in all the standing and kneeling rituals, then they would need to leave the service (in clear violation of one of the conditions for receiving funding from the student union).
    She also whispered something to the cracker dispenser just prior to Webster receiving his cracker.

    After receiving his cracker, Webster was accosted by Michelle Ducker, both in front of the congregation, and again after he had returned to his seat.
    After Webster had returned to his seat, Michelle Ducker ran around behind Webster, then proceeded to reach over and attempt to manhandle the cracker from Webster’s grasp, while yelling at Webster to give her the cracker and “screaming” for his friend Bernie to help her.
    After all this self-created mayhem she then proceeded to summon the help of a large usher named Joshua Swallows ( an appropriate name considering the circumstances : D ), who asked Webster and Bernie to accompany him outside into the hallway, where he proceeded to explain to them that the reason why he and Michelle were concerned about Cook not eating his cracker, was that he might attempt to practice witchcraft or black magic with it. After this, Webster Cook and his friend left the building.

    That in a nutshell, is how this whole debacle got started. It all came about because of a stupid, superstitious, intolerant religious fanatic called Michell Ducker, and her deluded superstitious mate.

    How paranoid are these people, to suspect that a university student would be purloining a communion cracker in order to perform witchcraft or black magic with it?
    But I guess anyone who can convince themselves that a priest mumbling an incantation over a cracker can somehow mysteriously change it into some kind of demi-god, can convince themselves of just about anything. These people really are deluded nutters, who’s minds appear to be stuck somewhere back in the dark ages.

    Does anyone have any other information about this Michelle Ducker loon?

  217. #217 black wolf
    July 26, 2008

    I’m not telling anyone what to think, so to make up your own minds, look up delusion (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delusion) and delusional disorder (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delusional_disorder) to see what fits whom.

  218. #218 Sandi
    July 26, 2008

    So…have I mentioned lately that Myers is a bigot? Imagine a professor bashing Jews on his blog. Imagine a professor bashing Blacks on his website. Everyone would be shocked. Oh, but that’s different, you cry. Those people aren’t Catholics, so of course we shouldn’t bash them. We’re not being bigots if we trash Catholics, though. It’s only bigotry if Jews, Blacks, or homosexuals are involved. You folks couldn’t analogize if your lives depended on it; absolutely no logic at all. Myers thinks it’s perfectly fine to intentionally insult and bait Catholics and bend over backwards to publicly desecrate whatever they hold to be sacred. The “intention” to insult is the main point. Not only does it demonstrate intolerance and bigotry, but it also shows great immaturity and incivility as well. Sort of like a teenager who hates his father, the government, and all authority figures. Yeah, sort of like a hippie. You know, Bishop Sheen was acquainted with a man who used to bash Catholics whenever possible. Sheen met the man and said, “What is your sin?” After talking and listening quite a bit, he learned that the man had stolen a great deal of money in the past. The man had turned his guilt into anger at the Church for its position that stealing was a sin. Obviously, Myers is hate-filled and angry at the Church. My question to Myers is: what is your sin? Marital infidelity? Anger at God for the death of a loved one? Plagiarism? I don’t know, but he’s obviously feeling very guilty about some sin and has inverted his guilt into anger. Enough psychoanalyzing the psycho. Hey, how many atheists does it take to change a lightbulb? It doesn’t matter; they never see the light anyway! P.S. Don’t bother replying; I’ve got a Red Sox game to watch. GO SOX!!

  219. #219 Zeno
    July 26, 2008

    What is Bryan Stikeleather’s email address? I have to ask him something.

    I have a question for Bryan, too. When did his family lose the “r” in its last name? I’ll bet it used to be “Strikeleather” and no one noticed when they started to misspell it.

  220. #220 Tor A
    July 26, 2008

    This is freaking me out. I wonder what the people writing in with threats are like in real life. They could be your neighbour.

    Has the pope said anything about the cracker incident or PZ Myers yet? I bet he’ll promise it will never happen again like he usually does.

  221. #221 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    If somebody starts up an “Atheist League” headed by someone who foams at the mouth in “defense” of atheism as much as Bill Donohue does in “defense” of Catholicism, will they get as much press coverage?

    I nominate Rayven!! Rayven! Rayven! Rayven! He sounds intolerant!

  222. #222 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    I’m not telling anyone what to think, so to make up your own minds, look up delusion (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delusion) and delusional disorder (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delusional_disorder) to see what fits whom.

    Don’t tell us what to look up – we can think for ourselves, we’re Bright!!!

  223. #223 JonathanL
    July 26, 2008

    I was wondering if Sandi = Baba, but it seems Baba takes lots of little craps on the thread while Sandi takes the occasional large crap on the thread.

  224. #224 jagannath
    July 26, 2008

    Baba Yaga, is catholic church innocent of wrong doings?

  225. #225 Zeno
    July 26, 2008

    Sandi: My question to Myers is: what is your sin? Marital infidelity? Anger at God for the death of a loved one? … P.S. Don’t bother replying; I’ve got a Red Sox game to watch. GO SOX!!

    So now it’s a sin to be angry at God over the death of a loved one? I think Sandi thinks the Vatican is too easygoing and decided to make up some new sins on her own. That might be considered heresy. Is Sandi going to stone herself?

    By the way, the Red Sox lost. Why is God so cruel to you? (Careful! Don’t get angry with him!)

  226. #226 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Has the pope said anything about the cracker incident or PZ Myers yet? I bet he’ll promise it will never happen again like he usually does.

    That Pope – what a character!!

  227. #227 Trolleyfish
    July 26, 2008

    According to The Blue Banner, Mr. Stikeleather (with a name like that, I assume it’s the same person) hasn’t been a Catholic for long:

    Some Christian students admit they do not practice Lent because they simply do not have the time, yet Bryan Stikeleather, a Western Carolina graduate who converted to Catholicism in 2005, said it is a very important holiday and should be taken into consideration not just by Catholics but by all.

    “In America’s go-go consumer society, it would benefit everyone to take the time to step back and ask ourselves if we’re living the way we ought to be living,” Stikeleather said. “It doesn’t matter whether you’re religious or not. Everyone could benefit from practicing Lent. It’s also a good chance to renew your New Year’s Resolutions. It’s hard to flake with 40 days.”

    Well, Mr. Stikeleather, color me confused. You don’t care for “America’s go-go consumer society,” and yet you don’t mind fantasizing about America’s kidnapping, raping, murdering, and illegal dumping society or studying for a degree that’s driven by consumption.

    You became a Catholic in freaking 2005, yet you’re “outraged” now that the precious religion that you’ve been practicing for no more than 3 years has been questioned. Why don’t you share your outrage with the children, and their families, who’ve been porked by the Catholic clergy over the last 50 years?

    Here’s a tip on something to sacrifice for 40 days for the next Lent: freebasing crack.

    “Lenting season is a time of penance. In order to properly celebrate Lent, we need to recall our sins and reflect on them,” Stikeleather said. “It’s a chance to check in with God daily and make sure my heart is in the right place.”

    Well, sir, you apparently haven’t been checking in often enough.

  228. #228 AJ Milne
    July 26, 2008

    Dastardly!! Yet characteristically uncreative of the atheists on this site.

    Ooh. An insinuation. Not especially specific. Will not be defended.

    Who are you, and what have you done with the real Baba?

  229. #229 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    I was wondering if Sandi = Baba, but it seems Baba takes lots of little craps on the thread while Sandi takes the occasional large crap on the thread.

    What amazing critical thinking skills!! But I’m still skeptical.

  230. #230 DrFrank
    July 26, 2008

    Sandi, you really need to learn the difference between hating people and criticising a belief. For example, many Catholic beliefs are silly and deserve to be ridiculed. However, the vast majority of Catholics are just decent people getting on with their lives like everyone else.

    Do you see now why it’s inappropriate to compare this to racism?

  231. #231 Sandi
    July 26, 2008

    “Has the pope said anything about the cracker incident or PZ Myers yet? I bet he’ll promise it will never happen again like he usually does (Tor A #220).”

    Believe me Tor A, the Pope doesn’t even knows Myers exists. Myers is like an insignificant speck of dust on the carpet of life. (Hey, that’s pretty good!). I think of myself as the carpet-cleaner.

    As for your not-so-subtle dig at “The Scandal,” I can only say that a few handfuls of homosexual priests broke their vows and an even smaller handful of bishops covered for them. The VAST majority of priests and bishops in the world have remained faithful to their vows of celibacy and have sacrificed their lives to help people. By the way, did you know the Catholic Church was the single largest charitable provider in the WORLD? For “bad guys” they sure do a lot of good for people. Put that in your pipe and smoke it, you bigots.

  232. #232 Rayven Alandria
    July 26, 2008

    One thought I find a bit interesting is the idea that all the trolls may be the same person. I would love to track the IP’s. Wouldn’t it be absolutely hilarious if they all turned out to be Donahooey?

    That would be something almost worthy of making a youtube video about.

    Trolls have always fascinated me, but only from a clinical point of view. It takes a very strange person to do what they do. Now, in truth, there are some people who are branded trolls, but they aren’t really trolls, just annoying.

    Then there are those kinds of trolls who are messed up but do actually believe what they are spouting. Maybe I will call them almost-trolls, mini-trolls, trollimps, or troll-ets from now on.

    Then there are the fully evolved (de-evolved?)trolls, the ones who behave the way they do for no reason except attention. The views they express are meaningless, even to themselves. They say different things in different company. Those are the really strange ones. They post huge text walls, “you must have small penis” lines, and stupid crap like that. They are actually easier to ignore than the trollimps.

    We need cyber tacos with some kind of secret sauce to feed to them so they will retreat off the web and go back to poking gerbils or whatever it is they do in real life. Yeah, secret sauce. Kind of like the secret sauce we sprinkle on ant mounds.

    MMMMM….tacos. Here you go little trollimp, here’s a taco for you.

    Yummy it is.

  233. #233 Son of a Nonymous
    July 26, 2008

    @196:

    That reminds me, we should probably think about introducing them to baba’s particular brand of stupidity.

  234. #234 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    Ooh. An insinuation. Not especially specific. Will not be defended.

    Who are you, and what have you done with the real Baba?

    I refuse to answer direct questions! What are you insinuating anyway?

  235. #235 JonathanL
    July 26, 2008

    I was wondering if Sandi = Baba, but it seems Baba takes lots of little craps on the thread while Sandi takes the occasional large crap on the thread.

    …as the second troll in question has demonstrated in it’s last few posts. Just a heads up there is not discussing things with this troll it just feebly tries to come up with something glib to say to keep the trolling going.

  236. #236 Benjamin Franklin
    July 26, 2008

    Jim Lippard @#210

    If I recall correctly, someone posted some info on the Catholic League in a recent thread and it indicated that they have 8 employees, according to recent disclosures.

    The fact that they have the likes of Keyes and Bozell on their board of advisors, is more an indication that it is really just a front for a conservative political organization, rather than a religious organization dedicated to preserving civil rights.

    When I was looking at the list of their board of advisors the other day and saw Keyes on it, the thought occurred to me that there does’nt seem to be a large African American component of Catholicism.

    Anybody have any thoughts on why that is?

  237. #237 Carlie
    July 26, 2008

    For all of these whackos, I wish they would run through a little thought exercise: their spouses and children on one side of a line, a consecrated cracker on the other. Depending on which side of the line they stand on, whatever is on the other will be destroyed. Wonder how many of them would stand with the cracker?

  238. #238 Michael X
    July 26, 2008

    Thank you Sandi, your opinion has been noted.

  239. #239 Joe Cracker
    July 26, 2008

    Prof. Myers, like I said before, instead of trashing the emails, you should also forward them all to Bill Donahues inbox. Let him have a taste of his Catholic folk.

  240. #240 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    One thought I find a bit interesting is the idea that all the trolls may be the same person. I would love to track the IP’s. Wouldn’t it be absolutely hilarious if they all turned out to be Donahooey?

    That would be something almost worthy of making a youtube video about.

    Trolls have always fascinated me, but only from a clinical point of view. It takes a very strange person to do what they do. Now, in truth, there are some people who are branded trolls, but they aren’t really trolls, just annoying.

    Then there are those kinds of trolls who are messed up but do actually believe what they are spouting. Maybe I will call them almost-trolls, mini-trolls, trollimps, or troll-ets from now on.

    Then there are the fully evolved (de-evolved?)trolls, the ones who behave the way they do for no reason except attention. The views they express are meaningless, even to themselves. They say different things in different company. Those are the really strange ones. They post huge text walls, “you must have small penis” lines, and stupid crap like that. They are actually easier to ignore than the trollimps.

    We need cyber tacos with some kind of secret sauce to feed to them so they will retreat off the web and go back to poking gerbils or whatever it is they do in real life. Yeah, secret sauce. Kind of like the secret sauce we sprinkle on ant mounds.

    MMMMM….tacos. Here you go little trollimp, here’s a taco for you.

    Yummy it is.

    I un-nominate you. You sound too irational.

  241. #241 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    For all of these whackos, I wish they would run through a little thought exercise: their spouses and children on one side of a line, a consecrated cracker on the other. Depending on which side of the line they stand on, whatever is on the other will be destroyed. Wonder how many of them would stand with the cracker?

    Sieg Heil!!! Let’s set up gas chambers too! What fun!

  242. #242 Joe Cracker
    July 26, 2008

    Catholic priest to his altar boy:

    “It is a sacrilege to spit, my son, just swallow.”

  243. #243 Nibien
    July 26, 2008

    “If I became an atheist can I become as pretentious as you? Please?”

    No.

    You still wouldn’t even be nearly as intelligent as us.

  244. #244 black wolf
    July 26, 2008

    Sandi,
    I’m sure that this has explained to you before. Catholicism or any other eligious belief, any belief at all, is not an innate trait. It’s nobody else’s fault that a person chooses something ridiculous to believe (except the people who smothered his critical thinking ability), and believing in it or having faith in it doesn’t make it one iota less ridiculous. It is a disturbance to mock someone’s faith inside a building or room dedicated to that faith, and there are laws to protect that place and the people practicing their faith therein. It is not a disturbance outside of a place of worship, no matter how many people feel offended by it. For one simple reason: if anything offending anyone who claims to be offended was persecutable, nothing would be allowed. You’d be surprised how many things offend other people.
    Cook did not disturb the service. He didn’t attack anyone, he merely didn’t fully participate, which was and still is anyone’s right. The wafer was a gift freely given and accepted, and nobody but the recipient has any property rights to it. Only future gifts may be revoked by the donor.
    Your anecdote is pointless and irrelevant. All of your claims and accusations are false, fallacious and/or hyperbolic.
    Emigrate to a country where theocratic law overrules secular law if you love oppression so much.

  245. #245 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    …as the second troll in question has demonstrated in it’s last few posts. Just a heads up there is not discussing things with this troll it just feebly tries to come up with something glib to say to keep the trolling going.

    Cock-blocker!

  246. #246 David Marjanovi?, OM
    July 26, 2008

    wookerist (comment 155) for Molly.

    ————————-

    Thank you, David. None of us would have been able to explain it as well as you did. (Was that right?)

    I doubt it. There are other Language Log readers here, too…

    ————————-

    I hate that. I refuse to answer, you can torture me, pierce me with a nail and throw me in the Gulag, I will not talk.

    Ladies and gentlemen, a self-confessed troll.

    My question to Myers is: what is your sin? Marital infidelity? Anger at God for the death of a loved one? Plagiarism? I don’t know, but he’s obviously feeling very guilty about some sin and has inverted his guilt into anger. Enough psychoanalyzing the psycho. Hey, how many atheists does it take to change a lightbulb? It doesn’t matter; they never see the light anyway! P.S. Don’t bother replying; I’ve got a Red Sox game to watch. GO SOX!!

    Another self-confessed troll — makes a big logical mistake* so people will be outraged and will be motivated to reply, and then tells them she won’t read any of the frenzy she hopes to generate.

    * People who don’t believe God exists are by definition incapable of being angry at him. Are you angry at Zeus because he kidnapped Europa and chained Prometheus to the Caucasus? Are you angry at Zeus because he sends all those hurricanes? Are you angry at Poseidon because he made the earthquake in Sichuan? Eat that, troll.

  247. #247 AJ Milne
    July 26, 2008

    What are you insinuating anyway?

    That’s a direct question. Your foul. My serve.

  248. #248 Zeno
    July 26, 2008

    Benjamin Franklin: When I was looking at the list of their board of advisors the other day and saw Keyes on it, the thought occurred to me that there does’nt seem to be a large African American component of Catholicism.

    This is not a very tricky question, Ben. Consider where most of the black people lived in the U.S. With the exception of Louisiana, southern states do not have a lot of Roman Catholics (and had even fewer in the past). Thus the Christianity which was drilled into the slaves was of the Protestant variety. Their descendants may be scattered more widely through the nation today, but the number of Catholics in their ranks is still small.

  249. #249 Sandi
    July 26, 2008

    I bet Joe Cracker (#242) knows all about that kind of thing. I guess he can’t come up with any rationale arguments in this debate so he has to share his lifestyle with us.

  250. #250 Lily
    July 26, 2008

    I am having a hard time understanding the difference between the hatred expressed by the atheists here and the hate mail you say you have been getting from Catholics. There are 63 million Catholics in the US alone. Even allowing for those who are nominal or no longer Catholic or those who are children so young, they cannot yet read, how large a percentage of all Catholics do your death-threatening correspondents comprise? Mathematically, is it even measurable? Are they really more than an angry and, perhaps, lunatic fringe?

    On the other side, we have you and your atheist followers spewing hatred and contempt for most of humankind, all served up with a heaping helping of self-righteous fatuity and self-congratulation. But are you representative of all non-believers? Are all non-believers bad neighbors and bad citizens? Do all of them wish to live at odds with the rest of the community? Or are you some fringe, sociopathic minority spewing impotently on the Internet?

    Quite frankly, I don’t see any significant differences here. A pox on both your houses.

  251. #251 craig
    July 26, 2008

    Sandi, have I mentioned lately that you’re an idiot?

    ALL IDEAS ARE FAIR GAME FOR CRITICISM.

    Claiming that criticism of your ideas is bigotry exposes you as a craven coward who can’t defend her ideas and demands that her ideas be given a pass as being “special.”

    It also exposes you as a disgusting pig of a person, appropriating the suffering of true victims of bigotry, people with innate characteristics that others mistreat them for, and using it as a shield for your ideas.

    And we KNOW that you know you’re misusing the term bigotry.
    It’s a pattern, straight from Donahue on down – a deliberate and calculated design to use a concept you know liberals ahbor, bigotry, to get liberals to shield you from due criticism.

    Craven and disgusting because you know its a lie.
    Craven and disgusting because you appropriate the suffering of others.
    Craven and disgusting because you attempt to curry liberal favor when in fact you despise liberals – its an attempt merely to use them.
    Craven and disgusting because the true victims of bigotry whose suffering you are appropriating have often been and STILL often are experiencing that bigotry at the hands of Catholics.

    You must be a fool.

    Every time you post here you expose yourself as a delusional person.
    Every time you intentionally misappropriate the word bigotry you expose yourself as at the best a very stupid person, and at the worst, vile immoral scum using the suffering of others to shield your fantasies from the scrutiny they deserve.

    Yet you continue to post here. Please, keep it up.
    Every post is proof of the fact that religion short-ciruits rational thinking, and every post is proof of religious penchant… no, make that lust – for the exploitation and oppression of others.

    Religious ideas make you delusional.
    Claiming that criticism of religious ideas is bigotry make you immoral and disgusting.

  252. #252 Michael X
    July 26, 2008

    That’s a really good question Ben. Why arn’t their more African Americans in the Catholic church? I suppose they may have lost a great deal of recruiting time with their staunch defense and practice of slavery. But protestants are guilty of the same thing and they haven’t had as much of a problem comparatively. Is it the simplicity of modern charismatic beliefs that make it easier to follow as opposed to the centuries of dogma and obscure rituals that the Catholic proclaim? I think that may have something to do with it. Possibly once African Americans were acceptable enough to be preached to, they went with the religion that sounded more natural. This is all speculation of course.

  253. #253 Joe Cracker
    July 26, 2008

    Sandi, I was talking about the Eucharist. Do you spit, or swallow – it ?

    What were u talking about?

  254. #254 David Marjanovi?, OM
    July 26, 2008

    By the way, the Red Sox lost.

    Verily, I say unto you, there is a Flying Spaghetti Monster.

  255. #255 John Morales
    July 26, 2008

    Apropos of nothing, I note baba is Spanish for drool (slobber, drivel).

  256. #256 Jason
    July 26, 2008

    BRB, scribbling “for a sexy time, call 334-410-0611″ on all of the public bathrooms I can find.

  257. #257 Mondo
    July 26, 2008

    Holy shit those are some fucked up emails.

  258. #258 DingoDave
    July 26, 2008

    Craig wrote @ #139:
    “Man created religion so that they could pretend to have godlike powers themselves.”

    Touche’!

    “Alacazam, Alacazoo,
    I’ll change this cracker in front of you,
    Hubble, Bubble, and boil in a pot,
    I’ll convince you this cracker is something it’s not.”

    It appears that things haven’t changed much during the last several thousand years.

  259. #259 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    No.

    You still wouldn’t even be nearly as intelligent as us.

    Scathing!! An impressive display of rapier wit!!!

  260. #260 Fr. J
    July 26, 2008

    There is an organization called American Atheists. Their founder Madelyn Murray O’Hair was the one who got prayer out of public schools. She is a great hero to atheists. She also was a thief. Once she tried to defect to the Soviet Union and even they wouldn’t take her. Her son, a Christian convert said:

    “My mother was an evil person… Not for removing prayer from America’s schools… No, she was just evil. She stole huge amounts of money. She misused the trust of people. She cheated children out of their parents’ inheritance. She cheated on her taxes and even stole from her own organizations. She once printed up phony stock certificates on her own printing press to try to take over another atheist publishing company.”

    She was murdered by a fellow atheist. “Police concluded that Waters and his accomplices had kidnapped all three O’Hairs, forced them to withdraw the missing funds, went on several huge shopping sprees with the O’Hairs’ money and credit cards, and then murdered all three people. Danny Fry, an accomplice, was murdered a few days after the O’Hairs; his body was found with its head and hands severed on a riverbed, but his remains were unidentified for three and a half years. Waters eventually pled guilty to reduced charges.”

    So you atheists have a fine organization to belong too with a wonderful history. It has everything: theft, deception, fraud, and murder. Atheism at its best.

  261. #261 JonathanL
    July 26, 2008

    Trolls have always fascinated me, but only from a clinical point of view. It takes a very strange person to do what they do. Now, in truth, there are some people who are branded trolls, but they aren’t really trolls, just annoying.

    Then there are those kinds of trolls who are messed up but do actually believe what they are spouting. Maybe I will call them almost-trolls, mini-trolls, trollimps, or troll-ets from now on.

    I usually think of trolling as more how they post and what they hope to accomplish than whether they believe it. Trolling is usually an attempt to control the conversation, regardless of whether it makes them look good or bad they just want to be the focus. Sometimes just for personal reasons and some just to try to disrupt the discussions.

  262. #262 Fr. J
    July 26, 2008

    Michael, ever hear of the Abolitionists?

  263. #263 Michael X
    July 26, 2008

    And I see Zeno actually knows what he’s talking about. See, that? That’s why I read this blog.

  264. #264 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    That’s a direct question. Your foul. My serve.

    Theist!

  265. #265 Michael X
    July 26, 2008

    Fr. J, ever hear of a minority nor representative of the church?

  266. #266 Sandi
    July 26, 2008

    Black Wolf (#245). You’re absolutely right, so let’s start attacking Jewish beliefs. Have somebody steal a Jewish Torah and hand it to Myers. Myers can then rip the Torah and place it in a trash bin with a side of ham. Of course, he should also wear an insulting tee shirt at the time, such as one emblazoned with the logo “Jews Suck!” or “The Holocaust Never Happened!” Then, post the photo on the website. No bigotry there, right pal? Let’s go for it! I can hardly await your response. Let me guess…Catholics aren’t the same as Jews. It’s not bigotry to bash Catholics, but it is to bash Jews. No logic.

  267. #267 craig
    July 26, 2008

    “I am having a hard time understanding the difference between the hatred expressed by the atheists here and the hate mail you say you have been getting from Catholics.”

    Let me spell it out for you then.

    Atheists are NOT attempting to get anyone fired. Atheists are NOT sending people threats and death threats. Atheists are NOT trying to get people expelled from school.
    Atheists are NOT attacking anyone physically.

    Atheists are NOT attempt to silence criticism of atheism in any way, nor are they making the claim that criticism of atheism is bigotry, nor making the claim that criticism of atheism on a personal forum such as a blog is grounds for for being fired.

    Catholics are doing ALL of those things against atheists.

    All atheists are doing is using their freedom of speech to express their disagreement with what the Catholics are doing – often vociferously, even rudely and profanely, but just speech.

    No threats, no attempts to ruin others’ lives, no attempts to get others to stop saying what they want or believing what they want.

    THAT’S the difference.

  268. #268 Baba
    July 26, 2008

    So you atheists have a fine organization to belong too with a wonderful history. It has everything: theft, deception, fraud, and murder. Atheism at its best.

    I disagree. I still say Stalin offered the best of atheism followed by Mao. Just an opinion.

  269. #269 Michael X
    July 26, 2008

    Sandi, this whole episode was a reaction to Catholic insanity. Did a jewish woman assault a young man holding a cracker? Wouldn’t it then be non-sequitur to react by criticizing the Jewish religion? But, don’t worry. They’ll commit some oppressive act soon enough and we’ll be there to criticize it. Then your bloodlust will be satisfied (well probably not).

  270. #270 KM
    July 26, 2008

    Lily:

    Compare the Catholic sentiments expressed in the emails Prof. Myers has posted above and elsewhere — emails that express hatred for Prof. Myers, atheists in general, Muslims, Jews, and gays — with the following, resposted from Prof. Myers’ response to BobC in the “Write to UCF” thread (post #84):

    “We don’t have to condemn a whole diverse collection of people, we need to focus on the absurdity of certain beliefs, and protest the execution of specific actions.

    Catholics aren’t the problem. Some individual Catholics are, and they are enabled by the foolishness of Catholicism.”

    Prof. Myers — along with most of the atheists posting here — is not spewing hatred for any, let alone most, of humankind. The problem is not Catholics (or Jews, or Muslims, or Hindus, etc.) in general but religious belief. I repeat: it’s not a question of believers (except for the very few particularly vile ones), but of belief.

  271. #271 Jim RL
    July 26, 2008

    Lily, the difference is obvious, but you won’t admit it. The atheist side is not threatening to do bodily harm to anyone. We also are not spewing hate at anyone. We are are expressing our disdain for certain ideas. Destroying communion wafers and criticizing ideas is completely different than threatening people’s lives and trying to get them fired from their jobs. If you can’t see the difference you are blind.

  272. #272 AJ Milne
    July 26, 2008

    Theist!

    Don’t hate the player. Hate the game.

  273. #273 craig
    July 26, 2008

    “When I was looking at the list of their board of advisors the other day and saw Keyes on it, the thought occurred to me that there does’nt seem to be a large African American component of Catholicism.

    Anybody have any thoughts on why that is?

    Well, I worked for a Catholic organization. My sister worked for it, and my father is on the board of directors. Odd, since we’re all atheists.

    And I never once heard any one of the Catholics use the words “African-American.”

    No, every single time any words were used it was “the coloreds.” And the words were not used in very flattering terms.

    The organization moved from the city and it’s historic building, it’s home for over 100 years, in part to escape “the coloreds.”

  274. #274 Rayven Alandria
    July 26, 2008

    …as the second troll in question has demonstrated in it’s last few posts. Just a heads up there is not discussing things with this troll it just feebly tries to come up with something glib to say to keep the trolling going.

    Not necessarily. Some trolls use one persona to convince themselves they are rational and the other one to have the juvenile freak-outs through. They could be the same person, just as many of our recent trolls could be the same person, or a collection of just a few people.

    At one Atheist board we once had a troll who actually started a war with her other persona, it was a huge flame war with so much drama I could not begin to explain it ….and in the end we found out they were both her. This strange troll episode went on for many months. There was more than one invented persona, a poor,(fake), dead child, and all kinds of crazy shit. She cozied up to many people and invented all kinds of drama. Her *nice* persona was a regular poster. (I think her main persona’s name was Adrianne if I remember correctly.) I and another person got suspicious when she slipped and said something that directly conflicted with something she had said months prior to that, and we began questioning her. Slowly the charade unraveled. It was one of the most bizarre things I have ever witnessed online. We tracked IP’s and nailed her. She logged in the different persona’s from the same place. When first confronted she claimed her evil cousin did it to make her look bad and to frame her, that is was not her. We finally got her to admit the truth, but it took s while.
    After we found out the truth about her, she begged us to forgive her and stay friends with her.

    She turned out to be a high school aged fundy girl who began the fiasco by coming there to troll because she thought she could make Atheists look like scum. When it didn’t work, she created a fake Atheist persona and stuck around milking everyone with fake sob-stories. The troll persona still came by to cause trouble and her *nice* persona fought with it regularly.

    I’m telling you, some of these religious people are so whacked it’s unbelievable. If you saw the character in a movie you’d be thinking that no one could possibly be THAT strange. Sadly, you’d be mistaken.

  275. #275 KM
    July 26, 2008

    And, PS, Lily:

    What craig said.

    (Well said, craig!)

  276. #276 Joe Cracker
    July 26, 2008

    Fr. J, I belong to NO organization.

    Not the same can be said about Catholics, who belong and support an organization that has recently protected pedophile priests, and has a history of centuries of murder all in the NAME of CATHOLICISM.

  277. #277 gsj
    July 26, 2008

    If they really believe that the host is the “real” body of Jesus, does this make it a cannibalistic ritual?

  278. #278 David Marjanovi?, OM
    July 26, 2008

    So you atheists have a fine organization to belong too

    There is no organization.

    Your ignorance is the most embarrassing I’ve seen in months, and on the Internet that means something!

    There is no Atheist Un-Church. There is no organization. Atheists have nothing in common except that they agree that “there almost certainly is no deity” — what could they build a church around?!?

    Let me guess…Catholics aren’t the same as Jews. It’s not bigotry to bash Catholics, but it is to bash Jews. No logic.

    1) When you say “Jews”, nobody knows if you mean the religion or the people. You choose if you belong to the former, but not if you belong to the latter.

    2) The Holocaust really happened. Just like the Crusades happened, and just like Diocletian persecuted Christians. You are entitled to your own opinions, but not to your own facts.

  279. #279 Nick Gotts
    July 26, 2008

    Sandi@266
    Yeuch, holocaust envy. I preferred fatwa envy.

  280. #280 black wolf
    July 26, 2008

    Sandi,
    thanks for proving your memory span is less than half an hour. Remember me mentioning innate traits? Words too big for you?
    You know what? We can talk about desecrating a Torah when Jews harass and threaten a student with physical harm and expulsion from university who didn’t wear a yarmulke in a synagogue.
    And don’t project your blood-libel-driven desires onto people who had nothing to do with inventing, perpetrating or denying the Holocaust. A Jew posted in this thread supporting PZ’s action. If you can’t deal with your cognitive dissonance, that’s nobody else’s problem. Except when you try to deal with it by harassing other people. And that’s exactly why all this started.

  281. #281 DingoDave
    July 26, 2008

    I concur with Nick Gotts @ #124.

    Lysenkoism, and the Soviet collective agricultural policies, probably contributed more than anything else towards the total suffering experienced by the Russian people under Stalin and his regime.

  282. #282 jagannath
    July 26, 2008

    Baba, FrJ, Sandi

    Is catholic church innocent of wrong doings?

  283. #283 KM
    July 26, 2008

    gsj:

    No. The doctrine of transubstantiation allows for Catholics to move the goal-posts around as much as they want. It’s not cannibalism if you eat it, but it is kidnapping or hostage-taking (as opposed to theft) if you receive but don’t eat it. See a multitude of posts on this topic in the other cracker threads for further explanation.

  284. #284 teh07h3r0n3
    July 26, 2008

    I think the only respectable thing to do now is to get a web site up with user-submitted host desecrations.

    Sort of like ratemypoo.com, but with eucharist desecrations instead of shit. Oh…wait…

    I’m willing to help out if anyone has the know-how!

  285. #285 Larry
    July 26, 2008

    What amazes me about these nutjobs is their belief in an all-powerful cracker god who is apparently totally incapable of taking care of itself. A truly omnipotent ritz cracker should be able to take down PZ without lifting a finger, a mere thought being all that is required. And yet, he continues to live. This fact alone keeps these saltine-freaks absolutely vibrating with rage. Their meek little animal cracker is refusing to get involved so they must take action upon themselves.

    What a pathetic group of losers.

  286. #286 John
    July 26, 2008

    As for your not-so-subtle dig at “The Scandal,” I can only say that a few handfuls of homosexual priests broke their vows and an even smaller handful of bishops covered for them. The VAST majority of priests and bishops in the world have remained faithful to their vows of celibacy and have sacrificed their lives to help people.

    Sandi

    The actual sexual attacks are the smaller of the two issues. The greater issue is the fact that your Pope ordered every member of the clergy to help cover up these attacks. The whole of the church, as policyu, tried to hide evidence and prevent reports of these attacks, and as a normal part of the process, moved the attackers to areas where their past actions were unknown.

    Any body can have a few bad apples, but when that body help hide these apples and even help them continue their sexual assualts and help them to evade the law, then that body, and everyone who continues to claim membership in or support of that group must also carry responsability for the rapes.

    Sandi, it is just a cracker, your church is rotten to it’s core, and while it dose massive ammounts in the way of assistance, it does this for itself it is simply an effort to convert members.

  287. #287 omnot
    July 26, 2008

    “Minnisota”? Is that like “Mini-me”, only for a state?

  288. #288 The MadPanda
    July 26, 2008

    Sorry, I’m still laughing from that post way back there (#157) in which Baba proudly claims to have gotten this all-sweeping knowledge of ol’ Uncle Joe from wikipedia. (Just one calorie–not skeptical enough.)

    Sorry, amigo, you might as well claim that Communism is a Jewish conspiracy because of all the Jewish Russians who joined the various groups responsible for the February (March) Revolution. But something tells me that you wouldn’t know the Leftist SRs from the Mensheviki from the Bolsheviki from the Nihilists…

    (shakes head sadly)

    It would probably be too much to ask for you to actually research the sad state of China between the Boxer Rebellion and the Great Leap Forward to add a little perspective to your understanding.

    Or are you only interested in tarring atheists with the broadest brush possible?

    You, Sandi, and the Good Friar are still only worth 845 XP apiece, divided by the size of the attacking party.

    The MadPanda, FCD

  289. #289 KM
    July 26, 2008

    gsj:

    Just keep in mind that the explanations you’ll find will not be consistent or, by even the lowest of standards, even close to rational. But, hey, we probably shouldn’t expect too much by way of consistency or rationality in religious delusion.

  290. #290 eyelessgame
    July 26, 2008

    when you know what the hell you’re talking about.

    To pile on just a bit, Sandi, “about” is a preposition. Ending sentences with prepositions is the sort of grammatical abuse up with which a proper grammar nazi knows better than to put.

  291. #291 JeffreyD
    July 26, 2008

    Lily meet Sandi, Sandi meet Lily. I think you two will like each other. Sandi has a crush on PZ, but has turned bitter because he ignores her emails. I hope you two do not get into a fight over this. Have fun.

    Ciao

  292. #292 craig
    July 26, 2008

    Cute little smear of gays there, Sandi.

    Pedophilia is NOT the same as homosexuality, even when the victim is of the same sex.
    Sexual abusers don’t always target victims of the gender that they personally feel sexually oriented towards. “Straight” abusers might target little boys, etc.

    There can, of course, be gay pedophiles, but to generalize as you did was obviously a deliberate attempt to smear homosexuality as being immoral, to smear all homosexuals are being innately likely to be sexual predators.

    Slimy fucking sleazy tactic – and YOU’RE calling OTHER people bigots?

  293. #293 Benjamin Franklin
    July 26, 2008

    David Marjanovi?, OM @#246

    wookerist (comment 155) for Molly.

    Thanks for your response & thanks for the Molly nomination.
    I am wookerist.

    If you would be so kind as to refresh the nomination when they are called for, hopefully within the next few days, I would be honored, and highly appreciative.

    (+) = :)

    Benjamin Franklin/wookerist

  294. #294 craig
    July 26, 2008

    And of course I left out… your smear was a way of trying to pin the church’s problems on “homosexuals.”

    As if the whole thing wouldn’t have happened if it weren’t for those horrible homosexuals.

  295. #295 True Bob
    July 26, 2008

    Fr J,

    There was this bunch of folks who believed in god. They made a compound and everything, so that they could all be together. Then one day the leader and his enforcers made everyone drink poisoned kool-aid, and they all DIED.

    Ergo, all god believers are megalomaniacal killers.

    No complaints from you, it’s the same logic you used to implicate all atheists as evil.

    How can you stand to look at yourself in the mirror, knowing how you lie?

  296. #296 David Marjanovi?, OM
    July 26, 2008

    Lysenkoism, and the Soviet collective agricultural policies, probably contributed more than anything else towards the total suffering experienced by the Russian people under Stalin and his regime.

    And why did Stalin adopt Lysenkoism as dogma?

    Because it was deemed more compatible with Scripture Marxism-Leninism than the science of genetics (“Mendelism-Morganism-Weissmanism” as Lysenko called it).

    Sorry, amigo, you might as well claim that Communism is a Jewish conspiracy

    Unsurprisingly, the Nazis did exactly that.

    You, Sandi, and the Good Friar are still only worth 845 XP apiece, divided by the size of the attacking party.

    I notice, though, that you don’t let perfectly good XP go to waste… :-)

  297. #297 Rayven Alandria
    July 26, 2008

    My husband just asked if am STiiiiiiLL reading that cracker-stuff. I have been reading this all day. I have got to make myself step away from the CRACKer.

    It’s just so fascinating to watch the crazy catholics in action.

    I’m going to go watch a movie. Carry on good people (and crazy catholics).

    It sure would be nice if a few of the non-crazy catholics would show up and dialog. I keep telling myself that they exist, but I know that’s just me having faith in something I can’t prove. I hope someone gives me some proof soon or I will have to become a non-believer.

  298. #298 David Marjanovi?, OM
    July 26, 2008

    If you would be so kind as to refresh the nomination when they are called for, hopefully within the next few days

    Almost certainly impossible. I’ll be digging for Triassic fossils for the next two weeks. In fact, I’ll leave tomorrow morning, so I should have gone to bed long ago instead of staying up till half past 2 at night. Just nominate yourself, or should I say “each other”… :o)

  299. #299 El Herring
    July 26, 2008

    Fr. J. has declared his final post here.

    I wonder if he’ll stick to his promise.

  300. #300 Rick B.
    July 26, 2008

    @ 288

    To be fair Baba the troll was referencing a prior post.

  301. #301 Carlie
    July 26, 2008

    Sieg Heil!!! Let’s set up gas chambers too! What fun!

    Way to totally miss the point, moron. The point was that if something important was really on the line, as all of those Catholic fucknecks sending threatening emails like to make analogies about, they would suddenly realize the cracker was, indeed, only a cracker.

  302. #302 Cheezits
    July 26, 2008

    So you atheists have a fine organization to belong too with a wonderful history.

    So? I’m not a member.

  303. #303 John Morales
    July 26, 2008

    The MadPanda, you sure those level 1 monsters are worth that much? I concede the Fr may be a level 2 monster.

  304. #304 Danon
    July 26, 2008

    Fuck the Catholic God.
    Fuck Jesus.
    Fuck the Eucharist.
    Fuck the Holy Ghost.
    Fuck it all.
    Sorry, just had to get that off my chest.

  305. #305 John
    July 26, 2008

    Fr. J. has declared his final post here.

    I wonder if he’ll stick to his promise.

    The Fr. is a compulsive liar, which should be clear to everyone by now.

  306. #306 zy
    July 26, 2008

    I love the people who claim to be persecuted and in the next breath call for the same treatment of some other group. Like Jesus said, if someone strikes you on the cheek, offer your neighbor’s cheek as well. ::rolleyes::

  307. #307 Jors
    July 26, 2008

    PZ, I would be especially interested in what you have to say about the Carl Sagan quote in #144 http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2008/07/i_get_email_20.php#comment-1013949

  308. #308 Anne
    July 26, 2008

    I am a Catholic. I think that to be an Atheist requires the same degree of faith as to be religious.

    If there is no scientific evidence for God, as you say, then you are quite correct that He cannot be proven. However, the theory that there is no God is equally without merit. Just because you cannot now observe or quantify Him does not mean that you might not one day. In the middle ages, early scientists could never conceive of Atoms. They were as sure that the world was composed of four elements as you are that there is no God.

    Therefore, by your criteria, the only intellectually honest position would be Agnosticism.

    Earlier in these posts someone challenged Christians to read a biology book, an astomnomy book, one on Evolution, and to take “6-months out” from religion to look at the world rationally. I ask the same favor of Atheists- only read “Mere Christianity” by C.S. Lewis. This is no right-wing ignorant rant, but a classic piece of literature that backs up its claims with good thought and good science.

  309. #309 Dianne
    July 26, 2008

    Fuck the Catholic God.

    Bad plan. Look what happened to Mary when she tried it.

  310. #310 GeoffI
    July 26, 2008

    I could not stop laughing! Those people are so stupid it’s hysterical.

    Thanks for the laugh PZ.

  311. #311 Lily
    July 26, 2008

    I am, unfortunately, not surprised that you don’t see your own hatred and its implications. All this impotent fist-waving and fiery rhetoric has led PZ to do something incredibly childish that, after the initial reaction of disbelief and shock, has actually started to provoke derisive laugher among the people who aren’t likely to write any sort of threats. I think that you will come to see that this stunt has been a public relations disaster.

    I told my own priest what was going on — he has never heard of Webster Cook or Myers. His reaction? He burst out laughing and then shook his head in disbelief– disbelief that an adult could suppose that there was some value in such a meaningless, stupid gesture. As predicted, you got an emotional response– and what else? God is still in his heaven and all is right with the world.

    Our world in any case. Yours seems to be hopelessly lacking in love, good manners, compassion, humor and plain, old-fashioned, neighborliness.

  312. #312 The MadPanda
    July 26, 2008

    Rick B. (#300) Yes, I know. He was asked for the basis of his wide-ranging expertise on ol’ Joe and responded thusly. That’s a bit like me claiming to be an expert on cephalopods because I read Phyrangula. :)

    John Morales (#303) and David Marjanovic, OM (#296)
    Gentles, at our collective level, even the 6d+6 HD Troll is as the lowly Kobald and humble Goblin…barely worth the time to slay even for a generous bounty. And at our betentacled host’s level, nothing short of a Class VI is worth so much as a sneer.

    The MadPanda, FCD

  313. #313 Wanderer
    July 26, 2008

    Wishing you all a very good day, nice times with your family, and no ass-desecrating moments (unless you like it).
    Thanks for the blog and the lively comments !
    Keep it going !

    Still looking for crackers to surface on Ebay.

  314. #314 KM
    July 26, 2008

    Lily wrote:

    “[Your world] seems to be hopelessly lacking in love, good manners, compassion, humor and plain, old-fashioned, neighborliness.”

    You did read the emails PZ received, right? This is called projection.

    PS: Way to ignore the many substantive respnses you received to your previous post! Your intellectual honesty knows no bounds.

  315. #315 John
    July 26, 2008

    If there is no scientific evidence for God, as you say, then you are quite correct that He cannot be proven. However, the theory that there is no God is equally without merit.

    I ask the same favor of Atheists- only read “Mere Christianity” by C.S. Lewis.

    But why should they study your god and not the god of Islam or the Norse? While we are at it don’t forget the gods of Rome and Greece in addition to those of Mesopotamia and Mesoamerica as other viable options. A person could spend years their life devoting 6 months at a time in the effort of accepting one type of a god and once through the list on what basis is a decision made.

    It is a fool’s errand

  316. #316 JeffreyD
    July 26, 2008

    Lily, meet Anne. Anne, meet Lily. Anne, Lily appears to have a crush on PZ, but is apparently pissed at him so has been spreading her bile. Probably best if you do not try to move in on Lily, Sandi has already set her cap for PZ and three of you at once is probably a bad idea.

    Wow, this making stuff up is fun. Hmmm, how about this, it is a well known fact that 79.25689% of Catholic priests have to kill a Jewish baby when they are promoted to Bishop. I read that on Conservapedia. Now, if I can just come up with one more big lie I might be able to be a Cardinal – can’t say I care for red, though.

    Ciao

  317. #317 Lily
    July 26, 2008

    What substantive responses? I saw none.

    Frankly, what is left to say that hasn’t been said by now? I have nothing more to add. So, unless one of you can come up with something new, I won’t repeat myself.

  318. #318 KM
    July 26, 2008

    Anne wrote:

    “I think that to be an Atheist requires the same degree of faith as to be religious.”

    That you think it doesn’t make it so.

    Instead of advising the atheists here to familiarize themselves with Christianity — something many, if not most, of us have already done — do a little research on atheism, something of which you’ve kindly demonstrated that you have very little understanding. The little pearl of wisdom you’ve offered here today has been proposed and debunked ad nauseum. Go. Read. Once you know what you’re talking about, come back and try again.

    Best of luck with your research,
    KM.

  319. #319 El Herring
    July 26, 2008

    Anne #308: Thank you for a rational and well-reasoned post. Personally, I have to say that I have not read the C.S. Lewis book you mention (although I have read several of his others), but when I can get hold of a copy, I will.

    As for the difference between the terms “agnostic” and “atheist”, it all comes down to semantics in the end. Richard Dawkins has covered this argument already in some detail in “The God Delusion” I believe. Even he will not commit to calling himself a “strong atheist”, and neither will I. It all comes down to evidence, and the evidence for a divine all-powerful being is simply not there – at least there is no more evidence for the Christian god than there is for any other proposed deity, or for fairies, the Flying Spaghett Monster, etc.

    And that, as I see it, is the defining factor. Even if there IS some sort of god, who is to say that it is the god you want him/her/it to be? Where is the evidence?

    And (anticipating any complaints from any side), please don’t castigate me for not capitalising the word “god” – for me the word denotes a job description, not a name. And as far as I can determine, that position is currently vacant.

    And to all other trolls (who I refuse to name or converse with), please note: Anne was polite, so I was too. See – it can be done.

  320. #320 SC
    July 26, 2008

    I’m curious: Has there ever been a government friendly toward the Catholic Church but at the same time heinous enough to be denounced by it? The Vatican climbed into bed with the most bloodthirsty regimes of the 20th century, turning away from them only when they began to lose their grip on power.

    http://www.concordatwatch.org/showtopic.php?org_id=871&kb_header_id=31871

    The primary, possibly the sole, criterion for the Vatican’s support of a regime appears to be its non-hostility to the Church’s power or ambitions. Are there any examples of regimes that have been accommodating to Catholicism and yet despicable enough that the Vatican has refused to support them? Of course, a few exceptions would do nothing to erase the long and sordid history of collaboration with dictatorships, but I’m wondering if there are any at all.

  321. #321 Jim1138
    July 26, 2008

    PZ: If you just add a filter “I deny God” You might get rid of 99% of the emails you don’t want to read.

  322. #322 JeffreyD
    July 26, 2008

    Evening SC. Interesting question at #320. Heading out for dinner soon, but that is worth a little research tomorrow. A dim memory wants me to say yes, there has been a regime accommodating to Catholicism and yet despicable enough that the Vatican has refused to support them, but I cannot dredge it up right now. Maybe it is just wishful thinking on my part.

    Ciao, Bella (I have such a crush on your mind)(smile)

  323. #323 KM
    July 26, 2008

    Lily:

    Posts 270 and 271, for starters.

    (I’m not sure why we have to come up with something “new” in order to respond to you. Your problem seems to be an inability to understand the things that have already been said — and they’ve been said quite plainly. The onus isn’t on us, it’s on you.)

  324. #324 Rick B.
    July 26, 2008

    @ Mad Panda

    Although I think Baba is an insipid troll, in this instance he was referring to the link in post 121. I believe he was being facetious.

  325. #325 Molly, NYC
    July 26, 2008

    Professor Myers–Just out of curiosity, have you heard anything about this from Catholics you actually know? Or is this crapola all coming from whackjobs from afar?

  326. #326 Keith B
    July 26, 2008

    You know, after this whole episode, I think I have finally reached some sort of conclusion about how I should conduct myself in one miniature part of my life when it comes to religious and non-religious issues. Up until now, I have said nothing when the girl behind the counter at my local coffee shop tells me to “have a very blessed day” with a special wink, a dangling silver dead Jesus cross and a smile, as if I should accept her supernatural premise no matter what my personal beliefs are on the subject. From now on, I’m going to tell her that I don’t believe in her blessings, but that I appreciate her sentiment nonetheless! Har har!

  327. #327 Anne
    July 26, 2008

    KM and John- If you had read “Mere Christianity” you would know that C.S Lewis first establishes the existence of a God before expouding on the reasons why He believes the Christian God is the most true to reality.

    El, It is good to see reasonable people on the other side of the fence. This blog has been for the most part, a treatise of mud-slinging by both sides.

    I think it is right to point out that if there is a God, there are many people vying for the right to call their God the real God. This is where C.S. Lewis could defend Christianity better than I.

    In the end, it comes down to evidence of faith, an altogether differnt thing that cannot be proven. I reasonable, rational and a responsible member of society. I am also a “Troll” because I really do believe that what you slam as a “cracker” is the true and living presence of Christ.

  328. #328 Anne
    July 26, 2008

    And since I asked the Atheist to read “mere Christianity”, I will read “The God Delusion”. :)

  329. #329 The MadPanda
    July 26, 2008

    Rick B. (#324)

    Well, gawrsh, I been near-Poe’d?

    (laugh)

    My answer must stand potentially adjusted for sarcasm in the event that Baba was being funny, because my facetiousness meter completely failed to register any such readings. Alas, my inner historian can be cranky when grave and complex matters are reduced to simplistic binary soundbites (which is why I avoid certain news programs like the plague).

    The MadPanda, FCD

  330. #330 John
    July 26, 2008

    KM and John- If you had read “Mere Christianity” you would know that C.S Lewis first establishes the existence of a God before expouding on the reasons why He believes the Christian God is the most true to reality.

    You can believe in God or Thor or Zeus or Unicorns or 100,000 Angels dancing on the head of a pin. Aside from cultural molding there is no reason to accept one over the other, they all demand acceptance with zero evidence.

    So when you say you ‘ C.S Lewis first establishes the existence of a God’ you mean he first convinces himself to accept a fantasy as reality. That is the step that most of the regulars here quite reasonably refuse to take, for it is at its base a silly base for a person of evidenc and reason to build a world view on.

  331. #331 Paper Hand
    July 26, 2008

    “I think that to be an Atheist requires the same degree of faith as to be religious.”

    “I think that to be a Gentile requires the same degree of faith as to be a Jew”

    Sounds pretty absurd, doesn’t it? And yet, it’s the same logic. Atheist is a term like Gentile – one defined not by what you ARE, but by what you are NOT.

  332. #332 KM
    July 26, 2008

    Anne:

    I don’t really care that CS Lewis “established the existence of God” to your satisfaction at the beginning of his book. That you and CS Lewis both believe that his version of reality is the best is in no way a compelling reason for me to believe that it is so. I will, however, pick up a copy of the book at my uni library when I get a chance. Thank you for the recommendation.

    I wasn’t trying to sling mud when I suggested you research atheism — just as I’m sure your invitation to research Christianity was not mud-slinging. If you think that atheism is a matter of faith, you simply do not understand what atheism is all about. The book El mentioned — Dawkins’ God Delusion — is by no means the best book on atheism, but it’s a good place to start.

  333. #333 dkew
    July 26, 2008

    If PZ nailed an actual priest-blessed Eucharist cracker, how come it didn’t spurt AB blood all over him? Did the Koran pages nullify its powers? Or was it St Dawkins?
    That was facetious, but since that bleeding-on-PZ scenario hasn’t been part of actual postings (that I’ve read), maybe it shows most Catholics don’t really believe their own mythology.

  334. #334 The MadPanda
    July 26, 2008

    Lewis is no more convincing than Augustine or Aquinas, I’m afraid. Unlike those two, however, he did also give us some fun kids’ novels with swashbuckling mice.

    Oh, and the Screwtape Letters, which were a fun read.

    The MadPanda, FCD

  335. #335 El Herring
    July 26, 2008

    Anne: you say “evidence of faith” which to me doesn’t make sense. You have evidence, or you have faith. If you have evidence there is no need for faith. Faith only thrives where there is no evidence. And for people who consider themselves atheist or agnostic (note I use the terms as adjectives, NOT nouns. I am NOT “an atheist”. I am “atheist” or “atheistic”. Small point, but it matters to me), faith is simply not an option.

    And there is always that niggling problem of which god. Are you aware of the now quite famous remark made by Stephen Roberts? I contend we are both atheists, I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.

  336. #336 JeffreyD
    July 26, 2008

    Before I head out, did a little research. Nothing yet on SC’s question but found a new, to me, site. Much enjoyed

    http://www.godlessgeeks.com/LINKS/GodProof.htm

    I literally laughed out loud at several of them.

    Nite all

  337. #337 bgbaysjr
    July 26, 2008

    This is not for Fr. J, or Baba, or anyone else who claims that there is an atheist organization or orthodoxy that has any authority over any or all atheists. They are lost to us. This is for someone who is still does not understand what an atheist believes…

    First, don’t believe any atheist who says, “this is what all atheists believe.” Our beliefs and opinions are as diverse as any other random sample of humans. Some of us are liberal, some of us are conservative: there are libertarian atheists, republican atheists, democratic atheists, marxist atheists. Some of us are straight, some of us are gay. Some of us are polyamorous, some of us are fiercely monogamous.

    The only unifying opinion is that there are no gods. Theists in our society seem unperturbed by our lack of devotion to Amun, or Ahura Mazda, or Thor, or Quetzalcoatl, or Amaterasu. We believe in none of them. And we don’t believe in Elohim (adba YHWH or Yahweh, adba Jehovah, adba Allah) or his alter ego, the Christ. There are diverse opinions as to the historical evidence for the rabbi Yeshua — or whatever his name really was — aka “Jesus.”

    That is it. There are self-styled groups that use “atheist” in their names, but they have no authority over anyone who does not belong to their organization, nor do most claim it (and, given my experience with other freethinkers, they probably have very little authority over their members, either).

    Anyone who says otherwise is either mistaken (we can be charitable) or they are actively lying.

    It seems that many fundamentalists or literalists have a profound difficulty believing that the world is not composed of polar opposites. They seem to think that if you don’t belong to a religious organization, you must belong to an anti-religious organization. But our lack of belief in any gods does not unite us any more than most adults’ lack of belief in the Tooth Fairy. Beyond that, you may as well be herding cats.

    By the way, very few of us were raised atheist, and many of us used to be theists of one brand or another. Many, if not most, of us have read the Bible or C.S. Lewis. Thanks, but we remain unconvinced. (A lot of us have also read the Qur’an, the Diamond Sutra, the Bhagavad Gita, and the Tibetan Book of the Dead. Same result…)

    I do not know that there are no gods. Athena may, at this moment, be wondering why there are so few sacrifices anymore. But I do know that there is no more evidence that Yahweh Elohim is real than there is that she is real. The fact that there really was a city called “Jericho” does not mean that the entire Old Testament is accurate or true any more that the fact that there was a city called “Troy” is proof that the rest of the Iliad is accurate or true.

    To this atheist, there is as much evidence that Yahweh Elohim knocked down Jericho’s walls as there is that Poseidon knocked down Troy’s. And that is the Alpha and the Omega of what I “believe.”

  338. #338 SC
    July 26, 2008

    Ciao, Bella (I have such a crush on your mind)(smile)

    Evening, JeffreyD.

    That’s actually a super nice thing for a woman to hear (this one, at least – and not just because I’ve grown tired of all the real-world crushes ;)). It’s mutual, but to be honest you’re not alone – this blog is a cornucopia of intellectual-crush possibilities for those prone to them.

  339. #339 gegesgalore
    July 26, 2008

    the united states would do well to remove the tax exempt status of institutions that practice delusion.

  340. #340 Anne
    July 26, 2008

    John- It is ignorant to comment on something you have not read. You don’t know what C.S. Lewis writes. If you are sure of your position then exposure to another should not be threatening.

    Paper Hand- It is not the same. Atheism is a belief system, the belief that there is nothing worthy of belief. Notice I say “belief” since I have already said that it is Atheism is as unsubstantiated as religion.

    KM- I did not have you in mind when I wrote “mud-slinging”. I had just read the previous 200 posts. Thank you for accepting my recommendation. Knowing the opposing side makes for better discussion.

  341. #341 El Herring
    July 26, 2008

    I have to log off now too; it’s 2:30 AM here in the UK. All the best posters seem to come online way after my bedtime!

    And just for the record, I’ve been posting here for some time now, except that my username was Elwood Herring. I decided to de-woo my name a couple of weeks ago for obvious reasons. “El” suits me fine. Call me either.

  342. #342 KM
    July 26, 2008

    bgbaysjr:

    Yes! What you’ve just said cannot be said enough, especially since our critics seem not to be able to grasp it.

    There are various nuanced forumlations of it, but they all come down to this: atheism means lack of belief in god(s). Nothing more. Attempts to load atheism with all kinds of political (and other) baggage with the aim of criticizing it on those counts are, quite simply, exercises in intellectual dishonesty.

  343. #343 Anne
    July 26, 2008

    El- Good to talk with you.

  344. #344 bgbays
    July 26, 2008

    KM:

    Thanks! And El Herring said it so much more succinctly — bravo, El, and pleasant dreams…

  345. #345 Anne
    July 26, 2008

    Thank you all for hearing my point of view. I hope that everyone on this blog can be civil as I, John, El and KM (with others) have managed. I have to tuck my kids in bed. Good night to all. I wish you the best.

  346. #346 SC
    July 26, 2008

    I love that site, JeffreyD! I can’t wait to read them all. Seems to have the makings of a drinking game…

  347. #347 Paper Hand
    July 26, 2008

    Sorry, you’re wrong. I don’t “believe” that there is no God. What I believe in is what I see evidence of. I see no evidence of Yahweh, Zeus, Thor, Odin, Amaterasu, Buddha, Brahmin, Allah, etc.

    Why should I believe in something with no evidence?

    I have read various theologians. I haven’t read Mere Christianity, admittedly. I’ve also read the entire Bible. I grew up Christian, but I came to realize that Christianity conflicted with the evidence available (as well as being based on belief in a being who, if he existed and was as the Bible describes him, would be horrifically evil, and a being who no moral person should praise). As a result, I rejected it.

  348. #348 bgbays
    July 26, 2008

    Pleasant dreams to you too, Anne, and yours…

  349. #349 genesgalore
    July 26, 2008

    lol, rotffl. atheism is not a belief system. we know that there is no god. just like we know that a prehensile, opposable thumb and a bad back that is verticle is advantageous as opposed to not have them. monotheism is a joke but then again what can one expect from peeps who accept messages whispered in the ears of the chosen few.

  350. #350 SC
    July 26, 2008

    PS: Sweet dreams!

  351. #351 Longtime Lurker
    July 26, 2008

    I left the Church for good when the College of Cardinals elected Razti pope instead of this guy:

    http://youtube.com/watch?v=BRpzkpyr6RM&feature=related

    David, be sure to keep us informed of all the Triassic goodness you unearth!

  352. #352 Paper Hand
    July 26, 2008

    Er, #347 was directed to Anne. Sorry, forgot to specify

  353. #353 Muse142
    July 26, 2008

    Zomg I am so sorry… as a Pitt student myself, I’d like to let you know that we’re not all murderous rapists.

    Ack to the extreme. =(

  354. #354 yoeruek
    July 26, 2008

    Ben Stein @ 70

    That for sure was a molly!

  355. #355 bgbaysjr
    July 26, 2008

    Paper Hand @ 347:

    Yes! Everyone remembers to not believe in Thor, but hardly anyone remembers to not believe in poor Amaterasu…

  356. #356 John
    July 26, 2008

    John- It is ignorant to comment on something you have not read.

    I honestly do not know if I have or have not read it. Much earlier in my life I read a more than a little of CS Lewis (religious Mother) and none of it has stuck with me. Of the dozen or so of his books I have read I can remember the name of only one, and not much of the content of that one. I cannot say if the argument in you recommended CS Lewis book would have any profound effect. For all I know have already read it and dismissed it. At this point all I can say is all the Lewis works I have read were not compelling in any way.

    What you will find if you stay here and continue you discussions is that almost everyone here knows far more about Christianity, Islam and other faiths that most people of faith know about atheism. Most of the posters I have seen have moved to atheism only after careful study of their and other faith systems. It is not a lack of understanding but a well reasoned reaction to careful study that has led them to accept that there is no god.

  357. #357 Neural T
    July 26, 2008

    I am a Catholic. I think that to be an Atheist requires the same degree of faith as to be religious.

    Nonsense. It takes zero faith to reject a proposition. Faith is belief without evidence. Rejecting a belief is not the same as a believing the negative. Simply:

    believe ~A != ~believe A

    The weak atheist takes the latter position. So without a positive belief (without evidence), that position can’t be based on faith.

  358. #358 Nelson .M
    July 26, 2008

    Wow, as sick of this whole crackergate thing that I am, it still amazes me how much fear there is on the Catholic side of the fence. Seriously, if they don’t feel threatened by the postings of P.Z. and the others who support him, why is there such a defensive attitude about them. They “know” that they’re right and that God will do Goddy things to their enemies. If they were truly secure in their beliefs, and honestly angry at Prof. Myers, they would simply wait for their god to do what it is best at: Punishing people.

  359. #359 BT Murtagh
    July 26, 2008

    “All I said to my wife was, that piece of halibut is good enough for Jehovah!”

    “He said it again!!”

    “Let’s be completely clear about this. No one is to throw any stones until I blow this whistle, even if they do say Jehovah.”

  360. #360 Lily
    July 26, 2008

    KM said I’m not sure why we have to come up with something “new” in order to respond to you. Your problem seems to be an inability to understand the things that have already been said… Hmm. You seem to share it. I said quite plainly that I had nothing to add (to what I have already said) and would not write any further unless you had something new to say (that I might wish to respond to). This doesn’t seem like an exceptionally demanding bit of prose but, clearly, you had trouble with it. I am so sorry. I will try to write more slowly, if there is a next time.

    Craig wrote: All atheists are doing is using their freedom of speech to express their disagreement with what the Catholics are doing – often vociferously, even rudely and profanely, but just speech.

    Uh, no. Myers crossed the line when he asked his readers to steal consecrated wafers for him. At a minimum, it is disorderly conduct to come into a Mass with the intention of profaning the Eurcharist, which the Eucharistic ministers are obligated to try and stop; in states with strong hate crime laws (which I disapprove of, by the way), he has incited his readers to commit crimes. Still, since it is safe to bash Catholics, they aren’t likely to be applied in this sort of case, even if a given parish decides to press charges which is unlikely.

    No threats, no attempts to ruin others’ lives, no attempts to get others to stop saying what they want or believing what they want.

    Of course it is an attempt to get others to stop believing! Myers’ belief that he has somehow shown that nothing is sacred is preposterous on its face but it was an attempt to do just that. While I am disgusted with threats of violence and death, what did you all think you were playig at? When you deliberately arouse strong emotions, why are you surprised by the reaction? Do you understand that little about human nature?

    As far as trying to ruin his life? Frankly, he is ruining his own life. Even if UMM resists the pressure to fire him, they will have to watch him like a hawk. Every class he teaches from now on will be, potentially, a hostile environment for believers. How many Christian and Muslim students are going to avoid his classes, if they can, because they don’t feel safe? How many will refuse to have him as an advisor, if they can?

    If a complaint about harrassment is lodged in the future, the university is going to have a heck of a time mounting a defense, since they know he is toxic but have allowed him to continue teaching. Really, there is no good way out of this mess for either Myers or the UMM.

  361. #361 genesgalore
    July 26, 2008

    sure wish god would get a PR guy so that his press releases would follow the same story line. you’d think a bloke so powerful and almighty could at least get his story straight.

  362. #362 Paper Hand
    July 26, 2008

    Lily @ #360: How is accepting a mass-produced piece of cheap bread given away for free “theft”?

  363. #363 Canuck
    July 26, 2008

    I will pray for you, even though I would really enjoy kicking your ass.

    Okay, that made me laugh uncontrollably. Too funny.

  364. #364 Damian with an a
    July 26, 2008

    Anne:

    Thanks for posting.

    I do not believe that it is possible to be an atheist without also being an agnostic, and vice-versa. It is entirely dependent on the particular god that is posited. So for instance, a god that has made sure that you never have any reason to believe that it exists would necessitate agnosticism [since a-gnostikos means "without knowledge"]. On the other hand, a god that made sure that there is tons of clear and undeniable evidence would necessitate atheism [a-theismos, without theism, i.e. without a belief in god], and that would hopefully be the case for theists, as well! Indeed, the absence of evidence in this case is not only highly predictive of its non-existence, it virtually entails its non-existence. It would therefore be patently irrational not to actively disbelieve in this god, given that no such evidence exists.

    All other gods should fall on a continuum between these two, and we are left to argue about which gods we deny and which ones we merely disbelieve.

    In my opinion, it is important we live, insofar as is possible, according to the very best evidence that is available. When you say that I cannot prove that god doesn’t exist, you are of course correct, but you need to be aware of the dismaying trapdoor that is about to open up right in front of you. That excuse can be used to justify literally anything! And there is also the fact that even believers do not accept this line of reasoning in almost any other aspect of their lives. It is essentially a case of special pleading.

    That is why I do not accept that any belief in god is justifiable. Once you allow one group of people to not only believe things for which there is little or no evidence, but to celebrate and venerate that mode of thought, how do you then argue against others who wish to do the same?

  365. #365 SteveM
    July 26, 2008

    lilly wrote:

    I told my own priest what was going on — he has never heard of Webster Cook or Myers. His reaction? He burst out laughing and then shook his head in disbelief– disbelief that an adult could suppose that there was some value in such a meaningless, stupid gesture.

    Yes, that is exactly the response PZ hoped to get. That you (all Catholics) would be rational enough to realize that yes it is a stupid and pointless exercise to “desecrate” a wafer. Instead he gets thousands of e-hate-mail, hundreds of death threats, calls for his expulsion etc. Did you by any chance also tell your priest about this? Did you tell him of all the Catholics damning PZ to hell and threatening him with bodily harm? What was his reaction to members of his flock dispensing such un-Christian “charity”?

  366. #366 genesgalore
    July 26, 2008

    lily, when you the email from jesus, pass it on to us. until you have, you have nothing but delusion to suck on.

  367. #367 Jim RL
    July 26, 2008

    Lily, you did read where he said that some of the wafers were really old. Many good Catholics have left mass with consecrated wafers. Children have also been known to do it. Also, is it really disorderly conduct to take something that is being given away freely? It’s like stopping by a giant luncheon for a group you don’t belong to and walking out with a cookie. How is that disorderly conduct? How is that a hate crime?

    Why do you flip out at the notion that he is trying to get people to stop believing? If that is a hate crime then I’ve had tons of people commit hate crimes against me on campus and even at my own home.

  368. #368 Ferrous Patella
    July 26, 2008

    Lily @#311 wrote,

    I told my own priest what was going on — he has never heard of Webster Cook or Myers. His reaction? He burst out laughing and then shook his head in disbelief– disbelief that an adult could suppose that there was some value in such a meaningless, stupid gesture.

    This is exact what PZ wants! He wants the entire Catholic community to see the act a Eucharist desacration as “a meaningless, stupid gesture.” That so many Catholics get their knickers in a knot over it is exactly what Mehers wanst to call attention too. Too bad not all follow your priest’s example.

  369. #369 Nibien
    July 26, 2008

    “Paper Hand- It is not the same. Atheism is a belief system, the belief that there is nothing worthy of belief.”

    /facepalm

    Let the religious ignorance come to light.

    Protip: Not believing in something is not the same as denying its existence.

    I have no evidence aliens have ever visited Earth. This means it would be foolish to believe they have; however, it does not mean I am affirming they have never done so.

    Significant difference.

  370. #370 Tyler DiPietro
    July 26, 2008

    C.S. Lewis’ Mere Christianity is the tome that originally concocted that god-awful “lunatic, liar or Lord” argument, for those who want a preview.

  371. #371 Andrew
    July 26, 2008

    Holy shit! I’m from Eau Claire!

    To help balance things out: there are at least two people here who think you’re right on. (One of them is me.)

    PZ, if you ever come to give a talk at the university, I’ll be first in line.

  372. #372 MartinDH
    July 26, 2008

    Baba @#138:

    If I became an atheist can I become as pretentious as you? Please?

    I don’t know if it’s possible for anyone to lose that amount of pretentiousness. You can but try…go for it!!

    Martin

  373. #373 genesgalore
    July 26, 2008

    i can think, i think!!! i believe in space aliens!!! i know that they exist. i also believe they have never visited earth. hey, ya know what??? i’m probably right.

  374. #374 KM
    July 26, 2008

    Lly:

    One of the major aspects of this whole situation that you just can’t seem to grasp — see, e.g., your own comments on PZ’s supposed hatred of Catholics and his classroom becoming an unsafe place for believers — is precisely what I explained at 270. It’s not about believers, it’s about beliefs. That’s all I’m interested in having you (and the other Catholic fundamentalists and apologists that have been lurking arond Pharyngula lately) understand. Alas, none of you seem capable of differentiating between the beliefs and the believers.

    Until you can understand the issues at stake in this discussion, please don’t bother to add anything new.

  375. #375 Joe Cracker
    July 26, 2008

    We should contact the Pope and ask him whether death threats and threats to lose jobs, over the Eucharist is Catholic policy, or whether these Middle Age practices are really history.

    I suspect that this could be a replay of South Park with Bill Donahue …

  376. #376 jagannath
    July 26, 2008

    Sandi, Lily, FrJ, Baba

    Is catholic church innocent of wrong doings?

  377. #377 Ktesibios
    July 26, 2008

    The Gumby background is showing up nicely without damaging the readability of the Comic Sans. This is a definite improvement over the old look.

  378. #378 dubiquiabs
    July 26, 2008

    Hx: Baba sounds like “Fr.” J, with similar tactics, except less loquacious.

  379. #379 Longtime Lurker
    July 26, 2008

    How many Christian and Muslim students are going to avoid his classes, if they can, because they don’t feel safe? How many will refuse to have him as an advisor, if they can?

    Lily, how many 18 year olds even know of Bill Donohue’s existence? Do you really think the incoming freshmen would even be aware of this kerfuffle?

  380. #380 genesgalore
    July 26, 2008

    christianity you got to love it. the manifest destiny folks, you know, the same guys that gave us ethnic slavery, child labor, genocide, wife beatings and on and on and on.

  381. #381 Talen Lee
    July 26, 2008

    My god.

    What a collection of stupid, stupid people, with such a tiny, helpless god that needs such feeble and weak thoughts to protect him.

  382. #382 genesgalore
    July 26, 2008

    they’re not stupid Talen Lee, they are just brainwashed. and guess who doesn’t know it???

  383. #383 Chris P
    July 26, 2008

    I’m still waiting for the Lily’s, Father J etc to announce that it wrong for churches to be bigoted in their hiring practices by eliminating gays and atheists from employment.

    Why do they forget this? Surprised that Dobson hasn’t jumped on the bandwagon – he of the “Christian affirmation required” for employment.

    And WHEN are they going to start paying taxes.

    Chris P

  384. #384 catta
    July 26, 2008

    I told my own priest what was going on — he has never heard of Webster Cook or Myers. His reaction? He burst out laughing and then shook his head in disbelief– disbelief that an adult could suppose that there was some value in such a meaningless, stupid gesture.

    And you’re absolutely sure that he wasn’t laughing at the realisation that you really do believe in transubstantiation? That would’ve been my first guess…

  385. #385 yoyo
    July 26, 2008

    Anne I’m sorry but lewis’ proof has been totally discredited by most readers, it has so many logical falws that it would take me too long to record you may want to look at http://www.daylightatheism.org/ for greater detail.

    anyway bigbagsjr has said it better than me, thnks. At least anne you tried to avoid lying unlike the other apologists who do troll here.

  386. #386 lily
    July 26, 2008

    Paper Hand: I don’t believe that I used the word theft. However, there is an explicit, printed instruction in every missalette in every Catholic Church, multiple copies of which are available in every pew. It states in plain English that only faithful Catholics may participate in the Eucharist and there are strict protocols in place as to how it is to be consumed.

    Therefore, Eucharistic ministers are obligated to try and stop someone from profaning the Host which, necessarily, disrupts the service. Hence, the disorderly conduct charge that would be appropriate, if the person does not immediately cease his misconduct.

    Jim RL Lily, you did read where he said that some of the wafers were really old. (No) Many good Catholics have left mass with consecrated wafers. Children have also been known to do it. So what? If it was done with no intention of profaning the Host, there is no problem.

    Also, is it really disorderly conduct to take something that is being given away freely? It is not being given away freely. There are conditions that must be met. However, the disorderly conduct comes into the equation at the point the Eucharistic ministers have to stop what they are doing to try to prevent the clown from profaning the Host. Disrupting a service is disorderly conduct.

    Why do you flip out at the notion that he is trying to get people to stop believing? I wasn’t aware that I had flipped out. Since I think the whole thing is silly and unworthy of a thinking adult, I am not likely to get particularly upset. I am also not a cradle Catholic, so I don’t have the deep, reverence that is almost part of the blood and bones of many faithful.

    Moreover, I have no problem with anyone using reason and logic to talk civilly with people and try to persuade them to a different point of view. But that didn’t happen here. This was not reasonable or charitable and there was neither civility nor logic employed. Myers knew how deeply upsetting an act it was and he did it deliberately to hurt as many people as possible. It was unworthy of an adult and a deeply antisocial, spiteful thing to do.

    Someone wrote: This is exact what PZ wants! He wants the entire Catholic community to see the act a Eucharist desacration as “a meaningless, stupid gesture.” … Too bad not all follow your priest’s example. You have badly misconstrued the point of what I wrote. Desecration is not a “meaningless, stupid gesture” it is deeply antisocial and antagonistic. My priest laughed at Myers’ folly. The idea that Myers thought he could accomplish something with such a gesture boggles my mind, as it did my priest’s. It was the sheer lunacy that had us in stitches. Did Myers really suppose that he could hurt God? Did he really suppose that the Church would stop believing and give it all up? The more I think about this, the funnier it all strikes me.

    I only hope that the Muslims who come to hear of his little stunt feel the same way. Unlike the pope, bishops and priests of the Catholic Church, Muslim clerics do have a policy of ordering up the smiting heathens and blasphemers.

  387. #387 DingoDave
    July 26, 2008

    -”So…have I mentioned lately that Myers is a bigot? Imagine a professor bashing Jews on his blog. Imagine a professor bashing Blacks on his website.”

    Imagine Catholics bashing atheists on this blog. Now fancy that? Who would have thought?

  388. #388 KM
    July 26, 2008

    Lily wrote:

    “How many Christian and Muslim students are going to avoid his classes, if they can, because they don’t feel safe? How many will refuse to have him as an advisor, if they can?”

    Aside from your misunderstanding of the actual target of Prof. Myers’ “desecration” (see posts 270 and 374), you’re purposefully omitting something that will defuse the point you’re obviously trying to make here. Among the desecrated items were the cracker, the Qu’ran, and the title page of Dawkins’ God Delusion. By your logic, atheists should also avoid Prof. Myers classes. He did, afterall, destroy part of a symbol of their beliefs (or lack thereof), too.

    Also, jsut a tip: avoid making points with rhetorical questions. Your reader’s response may not be the same as yours, and your point will not be made as you want it to be. My guess is that only a very few Christian, Muslim, or atheist would-have-been students of Prof. Myers will avoid his biology classes because, in his private time, he trashed a cracker and a few pages from a couple of books.

  389. #389 Tyler DiPietro
    July 26, 2008

    “Did Myers really suppose that he could hurt God?”

    Seeing as though he doesn’t believe god(s) exist(s), I would find that particular scenario highly unlikely. PZ has, rather, been rather explicit in his motivation to show that nothing bad happens when you fuck up a stupid cracker, no matter what supernatural properties you delude yourself into thinking it has.

  390. #390 Moses
    July 26, 2008

    You see, its only a smart idea to pontificate when you know what the hell you’re talking about.

    Posted by: Sandi | July 26, 2008 4:09 PM

    Grammar Nazi – UR DOIN WRONG!!! U can knot hav cheezeburger!!11!

  391. #391 John
    July 26, 2008

    The idea that Myers thought he could accomplish something with such a gesture boggles my mind, as it did my priest’s. It was the sheer lunacy that had us in stitches.

    Lunacy? You are here are you not? The fact that members of you church have resorted to the physical assualt of someone to defend a lump of dough has been made public. Both of these events indicate he has done quite a lot.

    I only hope that the Muslims who come to hear of his little stunt feel the same way.

    So far the only threats he has gotten have come from self professed christians.

    That alone says a lot and validates PZ Myers efforts.

  392. #392 Lily
    July 26, 2008

    KM: It’s not about believers, it’s about beliefs. That’s all I’m interested in having you (and the other Catholic fundamentalists and apologists that have been lurking arond Pharyngula lately) understand. Alas, none of you seem capable of differentiating between the beliefs and the believers.

    Who cares what you are interested in? You are making a distinction that is meaningless to most of us. You can explain it til you are blue in the face. You are wrong. We are the ones who will decide how we feel about this childish, spiteful act. You don’t get to tell us how we should feel. Sorry. That is the nature of reality.

    Why are you so ignorant of human nature? Did you grow up in a stall like poor Kasper Hauser?

  393. #393 genesgalore
    July 26, 2008

    how high is hosanna anyways???

  394. #394 genesgalore
    July 26, 2008

    how high is hosanna anyways???

  395. #395 John
    July 26, 2008

    We are the ones who will decide how we feel about this childish, spiteful act. You don’t get to tell us how we should feel. Sorry. That is the nature of reality.

    This has never been about feelings, it is about facts. You can feel that a cracker is god or you father or a bright green friendly flying hippogriff. It doesn’t change that fact that it is just a cracker. If you are unable to make that distinction that your problem. No one made you come over here.

  396. #396 Steve_C
    July 26, 2008

    Lily’s panties are in a twist over a cracker? really?

  397. #397 KM
    July 26, 2008

    * Sorry. That should read “… very few, if any, …”.

    Based on the reactions to the Great Desecration so far (from the three groups in question), I’d say that we could expect that no atheists and no Muslims will avoid the professor’s classes. We may expect a very small number of fundamentalist Catholics to avoid his classes. However, if they hold their religious beliefs sacred, valuing them more than things like their education, it’s not really Prof. Myers’ fault at all, now, is it, that they should miss out on his classes and expertise? Especially given the point of this whole exercise…

  398. #398 Tyler DiPietro
    July 26, 2008

    “You don’t get to tell us how we should feel. Sorry. That is the nature of reality.”

    Actually, we are perfectly within our rights to tell you that you should stop being a lot of lunatics over a cracker. We can’t force you too, though, so you are also free to go about your merry way clinging to your delusions.

    Death threats and harassment over a perceived insult to said delusions are another story altogether.

  399. #399 KM
    July 26, 2008

    Lily:

    That distinction is at the very centre of your inability to understand what’s going on here.

    My, but you are willfully ignorant and agressively stupid.

  400. #400 jagannath
    July 26, 2008

    Sandi, Lily, FrJ, Baba or some other catholic apologist as the main players seem to avoid the issue

    Is catholic church innocent of wrong doings?

  401. #401 EJJ
    July 26, 2008

    Here is Bryan’s info.

    Name: Stikeleather, Bryan R
    University relationship: Registered Student
    Campus: Pittsburgh
    Career: Graduate
    Program: Joseph M. Katz Grad Sch Bus
    Plans: Business Administration
    Email: brs83@pitt.edu

  402. #402 Howlin' Wolf
    July 26, 2008

    Larry at 285 said: “What a pathetic group of losers.”

    Speaking as a loser myself, I’ve really got to wonder just who are the losers here. Yes, Sandi, Lily, et al. do not display a great deal of intelligence, let alone logic. However, being the cynic that I am I would just like to remind you that by definition (Stanford Binet IQ) half of the people are below 100 (average to stupid in varying degrees) and half are average to highly intelligent. Even in the latter half there is a lot of stupidity. Such as, for example, your choice in deciding to argue with these people. Most of the regulars here seem to be educated and intelligent. By arguing with them you just perpetuate your agony in having to deal with these “losers.” Grow up.

  403. #403 bgbaysjr
    July 26, 2008

    I have long maintained that truth is stranger than fiction only because fiction knows when to stop… I am thankful to these theistic zealots, because I am finally understanding why they panic about heterodoxy and blasphemy, and are constantly relying on arguments from authority.

    It is all they have.

    Coming from a scientific background, I was trained to question all authority and to only trust what someone says when they have evidence that supports their assertions. If we say “I believe X” it is only as a shorthand for “the preponderance of evidence currently supports the hypothesis X, subject to change with more evidence…” Some people earn authority only as they forge a history of verifiable results, but they can lose it even more quickly.

    So, to us, heterodoxy supported by evidence is — or should be — welcome. Any hypothesis or theory can be overturned, but Sagan reminds us that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Although we stand on the shoulders of giants, we recognize that they are (or were) human with all the strengths and weaknesses that implies.

    I am finally getting that they must know, deep inside, that when someone draws a picture of Muhammed or drives a nail through a wafer and God does nothing that the only logical explanation takes them somewhere they are afraid to go: not only are there no clothes, there is no Emperor.

    So, blasphemy, of all things, becomes the only Unforgivable Curse, er, sin. Worse than murder. Not worse because it causes real harm to real people, but because it proves that there are no real gods active in this, the real world.

    May West reminds us that people who are easily shocked should be shocked more often. Perhaps people whose world is shaken by a “childish action” should examine whether the foundations of their world are built on sand.

  404. #404 KM
    July 26, 2008

    PS, Lily:

    I’m not trying to tell you how to feel. Don’t lie about what I’ve said to you.

    Likewise, you should not attribute vicious intentions to Prof. Myers — e.g., hatred of or violence against Catholics — that are not there. It is not the case that he was attacking Catholics — no matter how put upon you, as a Catholic, may feel. If he was attacking anything, he was attacking the notion of sacred belief.

    (And we’re back at that pesky distinction between belief and believer again… Funny that.)

  405. #405 Greg Laden
    July 26, 2008

    Now you are going to start getting piles of emails from people (such as myself) who want to see what it takes to get blocked by your filter….

  406. #406 Bubba Sixpack
    July 26, 2008

    Great. You’ve got a group of semi-literate psychotic wafer-worshippers infatuated with you and your posterior. This Hoss guy works with high-school students? Perhaps he meant they tutor him.

  407. #407 JoJo
    July 26, 2008

    I’ve read Lewis’ Mere Christianity. Unfortunately, the pure apologetic section of the work falls far short of its target of providing a rational justification for faith. He attempts to structure deductive and inductive logical arguments to support his conclusion that there is a single God and that Jesus was his only Son. Surprisingly, considering Lewis’ obvious intellect, his logic if rife with serious flaws. Three quick examples are symptomatic:

    Lewis states that “Reality is something you could not have guessed. This is one of the reasons I believe in Christianity. It is a religion you could not have guessed.” What he means is that the world is complex and therefore a religion that accurately explains the world must be complex. Thus, because Christianity is complex, it accurately explains the world. This logic leaves seekers of religion free to accept any “complicated” belief system, the more complicated the better.

    Lewis argues that Jesus must be the Son of God because the Bible makes it clear that he was “neither a lunatic nor a fiend” and that he must be either a lunatic/fiend or the Son of God. In addition to several deductive logic holes, the argument faces an obvious circularity problem. One believes what the Bible says because Jesus is the Son of God and one believes he is the Son of God because of the Bible’s description of his life.

    In arguing for basic theism, Lewis does a little linguistic switch and then makes something out of it. He begins by using the word “law” descriptively (i.e., gravity) and the switches to a prescriptive use of “law” (i.e., morality). He then makes much of this without acknowledging that that in fact is all he’s done. It’s a language trick, not in any way a proof of god.

    For all the issues with Lewis’ apologetic efforts, his attempt to provide an easily understandable, concise summary of the major cross-denominational Christian beliefs is outstanding. One can take issue with the lack of depth and breadth of coverage, but only if one does not clearly understand Lewis’ objectives. His discussions of the cardinal virtues, the sin of pride and the trinity are clearly articulated.

  408. #408 Caveat
    July 26, 2008

    Is that all you can be, a stupid biologist?

    Isn’t that what everybody wants to be when they grow up (growing up being a requirement for the job)?

    Who are these people who use ‘huh’ in correspondence? Hey, eh, LMAO, ROTFLMAO are all venerable insertables. But ‘huh’ just tells me that you an inbred wanker who doesn’t get out much. It further tells me that that is a good thing.

    I’m wondering if there should be an IQ/MMPI test before internet connections are provided.

    I would like to add that your comment numbers are astounding. I’m sure some sort of record was set with the 2,200+ post. If I get 6 – 9 comments, I figure I’ve really made a point. Any more and I start to get paranoid about all the attention.

    How do you handle it, Chief?

  409. #409 Lily
    July 26, 2008

    Oh honestly, these comments have degenerated into parody. You think the wafer is a cracker. Big yawn. Who cares what you think?

    Seeing as though he doesn’t believe god(s) exist(s), I would find that particular scenario highly unlikely. PZ has, rather, been rather explicit in his motivation to show that nothing bad happens when you fuck up a stupid cracker, no matter what supernatural properties you delude yourself into thinking it has.

    Quelle surprise! We could have told him, and many of us did tell him, just exactly that before he performed his childish rite.

    And this comment will go down as the most fatuous comment of all in a flaming sea of fatuity:

    Aside from your misunderstanding of the actual target of Prof. Myers’ “desecration” (see posts 270 and 374), you’re purposefully omitting something that will defuse the point you’re obviously trying to make here. Among the desecrated items were the cracker, the Qu’ran, and the title page of Dawkins’ God Delusion. By your logic, atheists should also avoid Prof. Myers classes. He did, afterall, destroy part of a symbol of their beliefs (or lack thereof), too.

    I’m sorry be blunt but how else can I make you understand? For sheer stupidity, this can’t be beat. Is there a single atheist on the planet who thinks that Dawkins is God? Is there a single atheist on the planet who thinks his book is sacred? Only Myers could have thought that tearing pages from it somehow proved something other than his disconnect from reality.

  410. #410 Tyler DiPietro
    July 26, 2008

    BTW, is it just me, or does the email from Jason Larrimore look like a Craigslist ad offering BDSM?

  411. #411 Nerd of Redhead
    July 26, 2008

    Wow, another 400 post thread in about 8 hours. When will the fun ever end?
    I see Lilly and Sandi are still having trouble comprehending that they are asking us to give special privileges to the Catholic church. No one, or no church, should be expecting special privileges from the public without getting called on it. We will never give special privileges to any body or any church. Ladies, you need to understand that a cracker is just a cracker, and will remain so until you can show the physical evidence otherwise. If you don’t have the physical evidence (and we know you don’t), and then you expect us to buy your hocus-pocus (as good as spell as found in any fantasy novel) that the cracker is now not a cracker, but something more. We just see you as delusional as our first question is usually “what is the facts?”. And the facts are, your cracker is just a cracker.
    I’m not sure this is the best analogy, but I feel like every time you try for us giving the cracker “special respect”, that you are being like a nice couple from down the street who, because they keep a kosher kitchen, is trying to require us to keep a kosher kitchen to show proper respects for their beliefs. Personally, it is going too far.

  412. #412 John Marley
    July 26, 2008

    Anne:

    If there is no scientific evidence for God, as you say, then you are quite correct that He cannot be proven. However, the theory that there is no God is equally without merit. Just because you cannot now observe or quantify Him does not mean that you might not one day.

    Wake me up when you find Bertrand Russell’s celestial teapot, ‘kay?

  413. #413 Moses
    July 26, 2008

    #210 scooter, the Catholic League is not just one guy and a computer, I’m afraid:

    http://www.catholicleague.org/about.php

    It has a board of directors, a chairman, and a vice president, and probably some additional staffers. There’s also a (probably powerless) board of advisors that includes some other well-known nutters like Brent Bozell III, Dinesh D’Souza, Alan Keyes, Thomas Monaghan, and Paul Vitz.

    Posted by: Jim Lippard | July 26, 2008 7:16 PM

    I’m compiling the financials for the local garden club. Their Board of Directors is as impressive as the Catholic League’s.

    So don’t let the list of names fool you through its “gravitas.” You’ll see charities with $40K, or less, in annual revenue with boards like that.

    They’re just hollow organizations with one or two employees, not always even one full-timers. It’s the nature of the beast.

    There’s got to be a board. No matter how much it’s just paper. As a matter of fact, I have served on a couple of boards in the past. Currently my wife is the Secretary of the Rose Society. I’m also the Secretary of two of my client’s corporations (our State requires a President & Secretary).

    These titles and positions are all as empty as the Catholic League. Though, frankly, I suspect the Rose Society and the Garden Club are larger…

    Anyway, the people on these boards serve so they can put that crap on their resume to impress people who don’t know the game. Or because there are other reasons, kind of like when I was in college and some friends of mine started doing some computer consulting during the DOS ages… They were in their early 20′s and calling themselves “Senior Partners.”

    I guess because “College Engineering Geeks” seemed so harsh… I saved their cards. I show them to younger clients as WHAT NOT TO DO.

  414. #414 Tyler DiPietro
    July 26, 2008

    “Who cares what you think?”

    Erm, you’re the one on the atheist’s blog yammering about the topic on and on. This question shouldn’t be too hard to answer.

    “Quelle surprise! We could have told him, and many of us did tell him, just exactly that before he performed his childish rite.”

    Well then, to quote the great Eric Cartman, “What’s the big fuckin’ deal, bitch???”

  415. #415 KM
    July 26, 2008

    JoJo:

    Thanks for the info. As one of the people who promised to read this tome, a heads up is nice.

    I recently read Lewis’ “A Grief Observed”. If nothing else, it’s an interesting account of his move away from faith after his wife’s death and his reasons for returning to faith after a brief stint as a skeptic. He made similar sorts of errors in his arguments in this book that he seems to have made in “Mere Christianty”. Now I know to expect more of the same.

  416. #416 Moses
    July 26, 2008

    ….So you atheists have a fine organization to belong too with a wonderful history. It has everything: theft, deception, fraud, and murder. Atheism at its best.

    Posted by: Fr. J | July 26, 2008 7:48 PM

    I see the asshole is back. Still doesn’t compare to one day of the Inquisition or the Crusades or the Holocaust or the Taiping Rebellion or any of the other In the Name of Christ atrocities we’ve gotten through history. SO fuck off.

  417. #417 Wowbagger
    July 26, 2008

    Lily, #311, wrote:

    I think that you will come to see that this stunt has been a public relations disaster.

    Atheists can’t have PR disasters, Lily. We’re not a country club that’s worried about its membership, or a listed company concerned about its share price.

    People don’t become atheists because they think atheism is a nice idea; they do it because they don’t feel there’s a good reason to believe in god/s. Popularity and public opinion don’t come into it.

    At worst, someone might not admit to being an atheist for fear of retribution from the theistic community – as we’ve seen here, the hostility has manifested itself into threats of physical violence (funny, I’ve heard no reports of atheists threatening christians on their blogs; have you?) and I can’t say I blame them for keeping it to themselves.

    You say that this is a meaningless gesture – yet you’re here writing to criticise it. Surely if it were truly meaningless you’d just ignore it and deny him the oxygen of recognition.

    PZ achieved exactly what he set out to do – highlight the existence of a catholic lunatic fringe who value a cracker above the well-being of an actual human being.

    Craig, #267, wrote:

    no attempts to get others to stop saying what they want or believing what they want.

    Just a point on this one – I, for one, want christians to know that not believing is an option, that believing is irrational, and that there are many reasons to do without belief. Exposing the lies and hypocrisy of the theists is also high on the ToDo list – since that does a lot of the work for us.

    If, by doing what he’s done, PZ has encouraged even one fence-sitter to free themselves from religion (and, since many deconverts admit that the undermining of their beliefs in just this way has sometimes been helpful in the process, it’s fair to assume that it will) then it’s been worthwhile.

  418. #418 Scrote
    July 26, 2008

    PZ loves to hear his own voice, like most of the arrogant professors I’ve forced to listen to so that I could one day put food on the table.

    You overpaid professors are not nearly as important and influential as you think you are.

    PZ is just a pudgy, middle-aged has-been who thinks that the sun shines out of his anus because he read a few biology textbooks once.

    What amuses me is all the sycophants on these blogs.

    What the hell is the attraction? His stellar posts?

    C’mon, guys – get a life! Get off the frigging computer and pay attention to your spouse and children.

    Quit giving this guy airtime.

  419. #419 Steve_C
    July 26, 2008

    Wow Lily. You don’t seem stupid at first glance. But then you go and say stupid shit.

    NOTHING IS SACRED. No matter how hard you want it to be. Yes obviously atheists wouldn’t care if someone destroyed a book by Dawkins. The point is that there’s no difference between any of the objects in terms of sacredness… including the banana peel.

  420. #420 nozzle 2
    July 26, 2008

    I think this edge.org response is relevant since in more than half of the rants there are associations with the less than human: nazis, molesters, amoebas. Just because we can say Godwin’s Law predicts the bogus associations with the inhuman Nazis, doesn’t mean there isn’t something neurological at the base of this flamewar behavior. Something that can be analyzed scientifically. (The irony of course is that Nazis are hated since they were bigots but bigots always invoke Nazis.)

    from http://edge.org/q2007/q07_1.html MARC D. HAUSER
    Psychologist and Biologist, Harvard University: Author, Moral Minds

    3. Be vigilant of disgust!

    The most virulent of human emotions is disgust. Although disgust was born out of an adaptive response to potential disease vectors starkly, things that are normally inside but are now outside such as vomit, blood, and feces it is a mischievous emotion, sneaking into other problems, alighting, wreaking havoc on group structure, and then spreading. Throughout the history of warfare, every warring group has tagged their enemy with qualities that are reminiscent of disease, filth, and parasites. The imagery is overwhelming, beautifully designed to trigger the rallying cry. Though the destruction of 6 million Jews by the Nazis was made possible by an extraordinary advertising campaign, it was made all the more possible by the carefully crafted manipulation of disgust: in the Nazis’ hands, the Jews were vermin, dirty, diseased, and thus, disgusting. Wouldn’t we all be better off without disgust? What if we could remove this emotional card?

    Would we knock the sails out of our efforts to denigrate the other? Intriguingly, there are some people who never experience disgust and don’t recognize it in others, even though they experience and recognize all of the other familiar emotions sadness, happiness, fear, surprise, anger. These people are carriers of the genetic disorder Huntington’s Chorea. Though they suffer from significant deterioration of the motor systems, they are disgust-free. So too are carriers that are pre symptomatic. Although we don’t know whether patients with Huntington’s are immune to the nefarious propaganda that might come their way should someone wish to foist their prejudices upon them, my hunch is that science will confirm this relationship. And if that is the case, perhaps modern molecular techniques will one day find a way to cure Huntington’s, but along the way, work out a method to crank down or turn off our disgust response, while preserving our motor systems.

  421. #421 Steve_C
    July 26, 2008

    Especially you Scrotum.

  422. #422 Anne Nonymous
    July 26, 2008

    I just wanna express my dismay over the way this other “Anne” and her Mere Christianity nonsense are profaning my beloved first name, and also, y’know, totally dissociate myself from all that.

    However, if anybody feels a burning need to read the thing, the full text seems to be available here. No idea about the copyright status of it though.

    For myself, every time I try to read more than about a sentence of Christian apologetics these days my eyes instantly glaze over in boredom and I find myself incapable of continuing. I gave the damn things a good fifteen years to win me back into the fold after I realized (at the age of fourteen) that there was just no good reason to believe the things I’d been taught to believe, and I think they’ve had their chance. I’m not wasting any more of my time on it when I could be reading about cool science shit.

    And on that note, I’m outta here.

  423. #423 Jeremy
    July 26, 2008

    Scrote@418:

    “What the hell is the attraction?”

    You tell me, you’re here too.

    And the fat jokes are just beyond the pale. Is that all you have? Way to argue like a five year old.

  424. #424 John Morales
    July 26, 2008

    Cripes!

    I just noticed that, while catching up on this thread, my automatic filters were making my finger page down as soon as “Lily” showed up.

    Thank you, oh adaptive para-autonomic reflexes!

  425. #425 Scrote
    July 26, 2008

    Jeremy,

    I came to see what all the desecration fuss is about. I don’t plan to stay, which I know will be heartbreaking for you to hear.

  426. #426 Lily
    July 27, 2008

    The aptly named Nerd (of Redhead) said the following: see Lilly and Sandi are still having trouble comprehending that they are asking us to give special privileges to the Catholic church. No one, or no church, should be expecting special privileges from the public without getting called on it.

    Uh, what special privilesge would that be? I didn’t ask for any privilege. Did Sandi? I *can* tell you that you will afford me my constitutional right to worship as I please without disruption from boorish louts. But there is no special privilege in that. It is a matter of law and enshrined in the Bill of Rights.

    Have you any other foolish remarks you would like to make before I head off to bed?

  427. #427 KM
    July 27, 2008

    Lily:

    You believe in the literal truth of fairy tales, and Prof. Myers is disconnected from reality?

    For the point that was being made — in the original Great Desecration post, it’s in bold-faced type for easy reference — it DOES NOT MATTER that some people think two of the three items are sacred, that some people think one of the three items is God, or that no one thinks one of the three items is not sacred.

    (Note that the part of my post that you found — as you should have done — fatuous began with “By your logic…”. This takes into account your — not my — inability to understand the point of the Great Desecration.)

  428. #428 Lily
    July 27, 2008

    The aptly named Nerd (of Redhead) said the following: see Lilly and Sandi are still having trouble comprehending that they are asking us to give special privileges to the Catholic church. No one, or no church, should be expecting special privileges from the public without getting called on it.

    Uh, what special privileges would those be? I didn’t ask for any privileges. Did Sandi? I *can* tell you that you will afford me my constitutional right to worship as I please without disruption from boorish louts. But there is no special privilege in that. It is a matter of law and enshrined in the Bill of Rights.

    Have you any other foolish remarks you would like to make before I head off to bed?

  429. #429 Dustin
    July 27, 2008

    Ballsack is new here, and may be forgiven for not knowing that PZ Myers really does shoot sunbeams out of his ass. In fact, I’m going to force him to drink some colon lavage solution and harness his ass-radiation to solve the world’s energy problems.

  430. #430 MartinDH
    July 27, 2008

    Anne @#327:

    If you had read “Mere Christianity” you would know that C.S Lewis first establishes the existence of a God before expouding on the reasons why He believes the Christian God is the most true to reality.

    Um, no he doesn’t. Dredging up my memories of reading that book 40 yrs ago, it seems to me that he asserts the existence of a universal “moral law” (an assertion easily refuted). He then uses that to assert the creator of the moral law and finally to assert the identity of that creator to the Christian god, hence universal creator. He lost me as he tried to incorporate Satan, Jesus and the Trinity with some especially awful arguments. Anyway, as his base thesis fails (Universal Moral Law), so do all of his “logical” conclusions.

    Sorry. His “Screwtape Letters” were a lot more entertaining (except he gets a little heavy handed trying to make his points). I did read it after “Mere Christianity, so it was for fun rather than illumination.

    In the end, it comes down to evidence of faith, an altogether differnt thing that cannot be proven.

    That’s rather the point…faith is evidence-less and its very existence is NOT evidence for the target of that faith.

    I have a pet peeve about the words “proof” and its cognates. Proofs belong to axiomatic systems and liquor. NOT to statements of fact about the world which are:
    1. Supported by evidence (evolution, anthropic global climate change),
    2. Lacking any supporting evidence (deity claims, Marxism)
    3. Contradicted by the evidence (Noah’s flood, thimerosal/autism linkage)

    …I really do believe that what you slam as a “cracker” is the true and living presence of Christ.

    That’s nice, but that is a truth claim belonging to the third category above.

    Here’s the point: you can believe what you like about a wafer that’s had some words mumbled over it. *BUT* when your coreligionists bodily assault and threaten the life, family & livelihood of any who mess with said wafers (even those innocently associated with one of the “perps”), then your belief has been brought into the spotlight of the public square. And once there it will be subject to scrutiny, criticism, demands for evidence and, when no evidence is forthcoming, derision. Because, after all, it is still only a cracker.

    Thought experiment: Imagine 1000 tabernacles each containing a wafer. One of those wafers is consecrated. What would be the odds of the selection of the tabernacle containing the consecrated wafer, if the selector is:
    1) An atheist
    2) A devout Hindu
    3) A devout Jew
    4) A devout Lutheran
    5) A devout Anglican
    6) A devout Eastern Orthodox Catholic
    7) A devout Roman Catholic
    8) A Roman Catholic Nun
    9) A Roman Catholic Priest
    10) A Roman Catholic Bishop
    11) A Roman Catholic Cardinal
    12) The Pope.

    My bet is none could better 1 in 1000.

    Martin

  431. #431 Steve_C
    July 27, 2008

    we’re all crushed…

    that your still here.

  432. #432 nozzle 2
    July 27, 2008

    Cool, It’s Stalin Time instead of Nazi Time ITT.

    As for Stalin, the Teaching Company’s lectures on Russia say that the Russian church prepared the way for dictatorship. In fact, the same “thou” word was used both for God and for the political leader. Neat, huh?

  433. #433 John
    July 27, 2008

    Uh, what special privilesge would that be? I didn’t ask for any privilege. Did Sandi? I *can* tell you that you will afford me my constitutional right to worship as I please without disruption from boorish louts.

    So, when exactly has your right to worship as you please been disrupted?

    Did not think so.

  434. #434 KM
    July 27, 2008

    Good night, Lily.

  435. #435 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    Lily@426:

    How is laughing about your blind devotion to fairy tales on a website interfering with your ability to worship your sky fairy? We’re not violating the Constitution, it says nothing about *offending* people’s delicate superstitions.

    Scrote@425:

    I’d actually prefer you left. Sorry to burst your bubble.

    We don’t know what the desecration “fuss” is all about either. That’s the point.

  436. #436 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Oh you who hopes to invoke a pair by your eponym:

    I came to see what all the desecration fuss is about. I don’t plan to stay, which I know will be heartbreaking for you to hear.

    You’ve found the wrong destination; back up to this before you go.

  437. #437 Kel
    July 27, 2008

    Oh wow, all this over a cracker. I’m never going to be able to look a catholic with a straight face again because of this. Cracker worship is hilariously sad.

  438. #438 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    Why would you like me to leave? Did I say something offensive?

  439. #439 Moses
    July 27, 2008

    KM and John- If you had read “Mere Christianity” you would know that C.S Lewis first establishes the existence of a God before expouding on the reasons why He believes the Christian God is the most true to reality.

    No he doesn’t. And that’s the problem with it. He establishes nothing in his circular logic. He just fools people by preaching to the choir who can’t see through his crap.

    El, It is good to see reasonable people on the other side of the fence. This blog has been for the most part, a treatise of mud-slinging by both sides.

    We’re not the ones making death threats because you don’t believe in atheism. We don’t believe that you’re subhuman and inherently worthless and evil. If, at any time, we treat you like you’re asshole, it’s because you’ve acted like an asshole. Even if you don’t think you have.

    When the religious come in here, dumping their fervent, but ignorant, beliefs on us, it doesn’t win points or make friends. And since we’ve heard all the lies and idiotic arguments, when you make them (for the 50,000th time) we’re not going act like you’re a great thinker or you deserve respect. Get your shit together and know what the hell you’re talking about before you argue. It works MUCH better.

    I think it is right to point out that if there is a God, there are many people vying for the right to call their God the real God. This is where C.S. Lewis could defend Christianity better than I.

    Maybe. But he still sucked. He ran from everything of controversy and swaddled it all in feel-good cotton. And this kind of representative thinking is anything but logical:

    “Either this man (Jesus) was, and is, the son of God, or else a madman or something worse.”

    Seriously, that’s fucked-up thinking. There are MANY MORE OPTIONS for the Jesus Story than just these two points. Yet it’s these kinds of false dilemmas, plus Christian Homilies, on which he makes his case.

    In the end, it comes down to evidence of faith, an altogether differnt thing that cannot be proven. I reasonable, rational and a responsible member of society. I am also a “Troll” because I really do believe that what you slam as a “cracker” is the true and living presence of Christ.

    Posted by: Anne | July 26, 2008 9:18 PM

    I have evidence. I have evidence that your faith is nothing like the original polytheistic, child=sacrificing Judaism practiced by the early Jews. That your religion has gone through multiple changes and has evolved from the polytheistic, child-sacrificing religion that first became culturally distinct during 1600BCE (when the Israelites went Kosher).

    Seriously. God had a wife. You can, if you know your bible, actually find some references to her. And you’ll here her voice in first Genesis, though it’s mistranslated to the masculine in Western Bibles, it’s still in the feminine in ancient Hebrew texts. There is a REASON “God” made them MAN AND WOMAN in OUR IMAGE.

    That’s what that strange passage meant. Man and WOMAN, EQUAL (but different) created by EL and Asheroth in their image. Before Asheroth was written out of Judaism in 700BCE by the Judean Monotheists under King Josiah.

    So, knowing all this. And knowing you’re completely ignorant of this. I know your cracker is a cracker, because I know the proper way to worship El is with HUMAN SACRFICE. Something your religion, in its various sects, hasn’t done for 2300 years.

    God doesn’t want a cracker. He wants your first born son. Though you are allowed to buy him off, there’s even a payment scale in the bible. If you’re rich, it’s a pretty large fee. If you’re poor, much less.

    Kind of like progressive taxation.

    Anyway, off to bed for me. This cracker thing causes problems around the house.

  440. #440 nozzle 2
    July 27, 2008

    @Martin, #430

    I agree with you that a creator doesn’t follow from moral law. However, doesn’t moral law follow from logic not being off in some distant Platonic plane, but here present between us individual speakers?

    I’m not saying moral rights are always singularities, but they are partly singularities in that you can’t deprive individuals of certain rights, no matter what the masses want. That’s why you can’t turn on the tv and instead of seeing NFL see the nightly torture broadcasts, no matter how entertaining that would be. There are moral rights. I don’t know about “moral law” whatever that is, since I didn’t study philosophy but that sounds like moral calculus which is kind of against the point of moral right singularities. Moral calculus being where you can add 5 minus 3 multiply by 12 and crank out morality instead of looking at the right and wrong, in singular.

    I am not a philosopher but I find the concept of moral rights worthwhile.

  441. #441 KM
    July 27, 2008

    Lily:

    What special privileges?

    At the very least, one of the privileges you are demanding is the right not to be offended. By the posts from you and your ilk, the emails Prof. Myers has so far received from “concerned” Catholics, and the Catholic League’s current witchhunt, it seems that that right is not to be afforded equally to Catholics and to atheists (or, for that matter, those belonging to any religion other than the Catholic branch of Christianity).

  442. #442 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    #438

    Why would you like me to leave? Did I say something offensive?

    vs
    #425

    I don’t plan to stay, which I know will be heartbreaking for you to hear.

    Sigh. Another would-be troll.

  443. #443 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    Moses: Holy crap!

    Concise expression is an asset, you know.

    Learn to summarize, you twit.

    LOL!

  444. #444 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    I don’t understand. I’m off to mutilate my scrotum with sharp instruments anyway. It makes me feel closer to God. Jesus would be proud of my ability to inflict pain. I AM a demented fuckwit, aren’t I? Goodnight!

  445. #445 Tyler DiPietro
    July 27, 2008

    “Why would you like me to leave? Did I say something offensive?”

    Well, no. We just think you should lead by example if you want people to ignore PZ.

  446. #446 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Ignoring the Brassierescrotum, may I say I for one don’t find Anne a troll.

    Anne, I encourage you to engage with Pharyngula.

  447. #447 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    You guys have are all trying to figure out life by playing guessing games, hosted by the master of delusion himself: PZ Myers.

    None of you have an effing clue what life is all about. You just think you know, and make yourselves convincing by interspersing your arguments with psycho-babble in order to impress.

    You are a sad lot of wandering, lost souls who possess intelligence but no wisdom.

  448. #448 Lily
    July 27, 2008

    Jeremy: How is laughing about your blind devotion to fairy tales on a website interfering with your ability to worship your sky fairy? We’re not violating the Constitution, it says nothing about *offending* people’s delicate superstitions.

    This is off-topic and has nothing to do with anything I have written. More sign, if any were needed, that few of you are capable of real thought about this matter. You, for instance, are just spewing the party line, like some wind-up doll. But really, you need to wait for the right cue. Otherwise, it sounds kinda stupid.

  449. #449 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    Never mind, of course, that I hold fairy tales in the highest esteem, above all logic and reason. Magic is awesome. It esplains everyting to clearly!

    Back to the gentital mutilation…

  450. #450 Wowbagger
    July 27, 2008

    As KM said, no-one has the right not to be offended.

    For example: the music of Celine Dion offends me, on several levels. What can I do? Simple. I just choose not to listen to her music and do my best to avoid situations where I would hear her music – or, if for some reason I’m somewhere where i do hear her music, I grit my teeth and put up with it.

    But what I cannot do is demand she stops making music or that people should stop listening to her music.

    Simple as that.

  451. #451 Siddharth
    July 27, 2008

    Uh, what special privilesge would that be? I didn’t ask for any privilege.

    Except that you did. You want the special privilege of people respecting your beliefs and not questioning or insulting them. Sorry, you’re not going to get it.

    Go ahead and pray, we don’t have a problem with that. What we do have a problem with, is the underhanded techniques and threatening and oppressive behaviour by religious nutjobs to try to prevent any criticism against their beliefs. Sorry, not going to happen. Offended? Too fucking bad. As PZ said, no idea or belief is sacred, and we need to question everything.

  452. #452 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    PS Nonymous, I feel your pain.

  453. #453 Steve_C
    July 27, 2008

    Wow that’s some broad generalizations. You couldn’t possibly know much about any of us. But you’re an ass. So, no worries.

  454. #454 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    Lily@448:

    Didn’t you go to bed?

    There’s nothing off-topic about what I wrote. The bottom line is that you believe in ridiculous things with no evidence, and are apparently willing to fight to the death to defend the irrationality of your beliefs.

    “Real thought”? Damn that’s ironic.

  455. #455 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    I actually find it kind of affirming that one of you has hijacked my name. It means I am hitting some nerves here. This means you might reflect on my words of wisdom later, when you’re feeling introspective and lonely.

    RIGHT ON!!

  456. #456 Steve_C
    July 27, 2008

    Lily doesn’t want to talk about the issues. She wants to ignore them. She’s offended, that’s all that matters.

  457. #457 Nerd of Redhead
    July 27, 2008

    Lilly, the special privileges you are asking for is that we must take your cracker as seriously as you do, and give it exactly the same respect you do. This goes waaaayyyy beyond normal social decency, where I listen politely to you and then I can ignore what you say. You keep saying I must believe you and do as you say. You need to back off a bit on the attitude. Go to my couple with the kosher household analog. Where is the line drawn that I must keep a kosher household because they believe so sincerely, and actually have Deuteronomy and Leviticus to back them up. Personally, it stops at the door to my house, or more specifically half way to my house. They can talk all they want, but I don’t have to agree with them. This applies to your cracker. I, and most of the thread, have listened to your concern. We believe you are sincere. But we don’t have to believe the same as you or act on your concern. Not doing so does not make us bigots. Time for you to go to bed, an not come back until you run yourself through the proper exercise to determine where you would put yourself in this analogy. Time for my bed too.

  458. #458 waldteufel
    July 27, 2008

    Hey, Scrotum . . .go eat a cracker. You’ll feel better.

    Then, get back on your meds. There’s a nice fellow.

  459. #459 Tyler DiPietro
    July 27, 2008

    I love how the trolls so effortlessly move from defending one set of meaningless, airy beliefs to another. Apparently, in addition to lacking knowledge of the supernatural significance of crackers, we now lack knowledge of some vague details about “how life works.”

  460. #460 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    Waldteufel:

    “Fellow”?!?

    The closest I come to being a fellow is that I possess ovaries, which are actually a primitive form of undescended testes.

    No scrotum here, people!

    LOL!

  461. #461 Dahan
    July 27, 2008

    Fr, J,

    I just gotta say this. i’ve tried to engage you in civil discourse. I’ve seen others do as well. I’ve tried to give you the benefit of the doubt, others here have, as well. But as soon as a point is made other than your own, you kinda fade away and start a new tact. Then you repeat this behavior over and over.

    You owe it to yourself to actually try to answer the questions being asked of yourself. If you can’t, it’s time to go away. Really. There is nothing more affirming to me, as an atheist, than to listen to your drivel. Honest! You are nothing but a clear indicator to me that there is no god. You are a living, breathing example of what is wrong with religion. Repeating dogma, hyper-sensitive, ignorant, and fearful.

    You really should try to keep quiet, if you want to do any good. You do your silly mythology no help with your ranting. You are pathetic. I wish you had not been brain washed, because it seems you might have been someone who could add to humanity instead of repressing it given another reality. As it is…

    FUCK OFF!!!

  462. #462 Anne Nonymous
    July 27, 2008

    PS Nonymous, I feel your pain.

    Posted by: John Morales | July 27, 2008 12:22 AM

    Yeah, I can only imagine. Hey, at least neither of us has the same first name as a bologna. That’s something to be happy about, right?

  463. #463 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    Dahan,

    Can’t you control your anger, even in writing?

  464. #464 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Tyler, it just wouldn’t be Pharyngula without the trolls.
    Adds ambience.

    Anne, yeah, let’s be grateful for small mercies.

  465. #465 FO
    July 27, 2008

    I actually find it kind of affirming that one of you has hijacked my name. It means I am hitting some nerves here. This means you might reflect on my words of wisdom later, when you’re feeling introspective and lonely.

    Alert! Masochistic persecution complex detected!
    Warning! Remote contact has diverted main cognitive functions to its posterior!
    Expect extreme stupidity, ignorance, and brain-dead fuckwittery.

  466. #466 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    John,

    Trolls like me provide comic relief. I don’t take life too seriously, and it amuses me when uptight intelligentsia, like some of the folks here, do.

    I’m actually having quite the chortling sesh tonight. This is a hoot!

  467. #467 KM
    July 27, 2008

    Just a freakin’ shot in the dark, here, but…

    Scrote:

    What are your thoughts on ghost-sighting and prescience?

  468. #468 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    Ghosts? What utter drivel!

  469. #469 Steve_C
    July 27, 2008

    Somebody remind me tomorrow to install greasemonkey for firefox. I miss the killfile.

  470. #470 Paper Hand
    July 27, 2008

    Scrote @ 468:
    Ghosts are “utter drivel”, and yet you believe in an invisible man in the sky, hunh?

  471. #471 JStein
    July 27, 2008

    In solidarity, I’m publishing the stuff. The added bonus, of course, is that it raises a lot of awareness about how much bigotry is out there.

    I guess Monique Davis isn’t the only idiot ready to pop off at any minute.

  472. #472 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    I’m outta here, you loonies.

    Enjoy what’s left of your lives, which will be difficult since so many of you lack inner peace.

  473. #473 Paper Hand
    July 27, 2008

    Oh, I’ve got plenty of inner peace. It’s outer peace that’s sorely lacking

  474. #474 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    Scrote…now that you’ve admitted you’re a troll and are arbitrarily making combative taunts, all of your statements have been rendered meaningless. You are a disgrace among trolls.

  475. #475 xeric77
    July 27, 2008

    Reading this makes me so relieved that I was not raised by Catholics! I’m happy to keep my distance from such astonishing hatred.

  476. #476 Steve_C
    July 27, 2008

    Is Scrote some sort of twisted Zen Yogi?

    Get your finger out of my 3rd eye asshole.

  477. #477 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Community Service Announcement

    Bashing trolls ? feeding trolls.

  478. #478 Dahan
    July 27, 2008

    Scrote at 463,

    Um, yeah. I used a swear word in reference to someone who is a supporter of a religion that has inflicted terrible harm upon others in the name of a made up entity.

    Can I control my anger? Sure! I haven’t made a death threat in my life. Even though I’m a former Marine with a fair amount of ability to carry out such a threat, should I wish. I don’t think that’s right. I don’t feel one should kill someone just because they don’t believe the same as you. That’s different than you and your friend Fr. J, I guess.

    I’m not the one who’s being “in your face”. I, like most here, aren’t trying to “convert” you. We just wish you’d leave us the fuck alone (damn, another swear word). Don’t try to pass laws according to your “sacred texts”. Don’t try to make us follow your “sacred beliefs”. Make your decisions on what is affirmable and real, and you’d be surprised how little resistance you’d see from is.

    Try to shove your own personal belief in a fairy tale down our throats and ask us to thank you for it, and you better believe I’m gonna add you to my list of “FUCK YOU!” candidates.

    Not complicated is it?

    You really are sadly ignorant, that you don’t understand this.

  479. #479 Catholic
    July 27, 2008

    I am a Catholic. Now that is out of the way, I am sure some of you may have some hatred prepared to type back to me based on that statement alone.

    Just some quick one liner thoughts/comments:

    1) If you want true separation of church and state, then tear up the US Constitution – the rights guaranteed in it are based solely on Judeao-Christian philosophy

    2) How do you expect any human to understand the fullness of God’s creation? What fuels PZ and his ilk, is the fact that they have a scientific answer and understanding for all that is explainable; but, when the topic of God arises, they have no ability to fully explain It. Since they cannot explain It, they mock It and choose to accept their inability to understand.

    3) Catholics believe in evolution – God created the process.

    4) I wish PZ well…may his hatred and disrespect subside.

  480. #480 Andrew
    July 27, 2008

    Lily @ 409:
    Oh honestly, these comments have degenerated into parody. You think the wafer is a cracker. Big yawn. Who cares what you think?

    Exactly. And why should PZ care that you think a cracker is anything but a cracker. That is the whole point of this exercise, which seems to have gone whizzing straight past your head. PZ thinks it is just a cracker and that threatening life and livelihood over a cracker is demented and delusional.

    How many times do you need to have this explained to you?

  481. #481 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Dahan, good to see you’re passionate, but you just fed a troll.

    Trolls don’t actually care what you actually say, what they hunger for is attention.

  482. #482 Hal
    July 27, 2008

    This is for Anne via damian:

    I’d have to agree that atheism entails agnosticism. To claim that there are NO ‘gods’ means arguing the negative in a question (Does god or gods exist?); that is, asserting that there aren’t ANY conceivable supernatural doohickeys past, present, or yet to be invented or discovered.

    Atheists argue the negative; agnostics say that the question isn’t even worth considering without further justification of goddism or religiosity or whatever you want to call the impulse to manufacture (and worship and convert people to) the aforementioned supernatural doohickeys.

    Think of it as a conservation of energy: Why waste energy inventing and propitiating fantasies? Yes, yes, we know– there’s Pascal’s wager. But with an infinite number of targets (all of which are the ONE, TRUE god) you never know, if you’re honest, if you’ve got the right one.

    Of course, like C.S. Lewis, it’s possible to settle on and defend a comfortable choice for yourself. But then you’re not being honest: not only may the buddhists or the H54t8ians from Eroticon 6 be correct about god or gods, but you’re actively perverting other impressionable beings from the Correct Path.

    The ‘actively perverting’ part really pisses off agnostics (and atheists, who aren’t going to linger over the question). If you entertain one religion, you’ve got to entertain them all (and by all, I mean every imaginable one). Then, you haven’t got Christianity, you’ve got Goddism, with lethal and imaginative retribution for all the competing factions.

    WHAT IF YOU’RE WRONG? This question haunts science and scientists– most of whom have an explanation, correction, and apology prepared. Agnostics keep seeking, if they think it’s necessary. Goddists charge down any number of embarrassing dead ends, provided they don’t resurrect themselves into proper agnostics.

    The flow of squalid apologies for godly perpetrations encourages agnostics to assert agnostic principles: “Just can the fairy tales and tell us the details of the morality. We already know most of it, probably. And try abiding by it yourselves.”

    So, if you don’t like being talked back to, it’s because there’s a universe of thought you need to explore.

  483. #483 Paper Hand
    July 27, 2008

    #479:

    #1: Really? Can you tell me which Biblical verse was the inspiration for the House of Representatives, say? Or the first amendment?

    #2: No, what “fuels” us in regards to religion is the lack of evidence for Yahweh, or any other deity.

    #3: Some Catholics do, some don’t. Who cares? We’re not talking about evolution in this thread, but about the laughable claim that a piece of bread is somehow human flesh

    #4: What hatred? I see no evidence that he hates Catholics, except for the particular Catholics who have threatened his life. No, he was simply pointing out the absurdity of transsubstatiation.

  484. #484 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    Catholic@479:

    1) Since there’s no mention of “God” or “Jesus” or any other supernatural hogwash in the US Constitution, how can you claim it’s based solely on Judeo-Christian philosophy? Many of the founding fathers were pseudo-atheists or Deists (common during the enlightenment), and wary of any kind of state endorsement of religion. Read a history book.

    2) In the last several hundred years, science has provided answers and solutions to many questions about the nature of the world. It’s testable, demonstrable, and repeatable. Religion would have us just close our eyes and chant “God did it!”. What is more productive?

    3) If Catholics accept evolution as the fact that it is, congratulations! Now if only you could stop attributing natural processes to an imaginary sky-fairy, we’d be all set!

    4) I’d hardly characterize it as “hatred”. “Mocking” is more appropriate. The only hate in this whole debacle is coming from Catholics.

    *yawn* Try harder!

  485. #485 Steve_C
    July 27, 2008

    Were any framers of the Constitution even Catholic???

  486. #486 Siddharth
    July 27, 2008

    How do you expect any human to understand the fullness of God’s creation? What fuels PZ and his ilk, is the fact that they have a scientific answer and understanding for all that is explainable; but, when the topic of God arises, they have no ability to fully explain It.

    Excuse me, but first of all, let me point out that when you mean God, you obviously mean the christian god. You automatically exclude every other god.

    when the topic of God arises, they have no ability to fully explain It

    Actually we do. Here’s a short explanation. There’s not a shred of scientific evidence for the existence of a supernatural deity which is remotely interested in Human affairs. Is that a clear enough explanation?

    Since they cannot explain It, they mock It and choose to accept their inability to understand.

    How dare Catholics offend the beliefs of millions of Hindus by eating beef? Isn’t it incredible hypocrisy to so openly deny the existence of gods of other religions and not respect their beliefs, but come here so openly to complain that *your* beliefs are not being respected?

    Catholics believe in evolution – God created the process.

    Obviously not all catholics belive in evolution. Only a subset of catholics believe in evolution

    I wish PZ well…may his hatred and disrespect subside.

    I wish you well too. May the wisdom of Richard Dawkins shine upon ye. Have a nice day.

  487. #487 Steve_C
    July 27, 2008

    From the other thread… in case CATHAHOLIC missed it.

    The framers of the constitution were meticulous in keeping god and religion out of the constitution. They expressly wanted the government to have nothing to do with religion whatsoever, including endorsing it. Almost all were christians of various flavors and commitment, so it speaks volumes, that they with deliberate care chose not to involve religion in our federal government.

  488. #488 KM
    July 27, 2008

    Dahan:

    Scrote, like her alter-ego, Shas, has a strange idea that swearing is immature and a crutch for the inarticulate (see various comments in the Michael Edmondson thread).

    I was one of the dupes that played her game last night. Don’t bother. She’s little more than an annoying, disingenuous twat.

  489. #489 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    I think “Scrote” just changed his name to “Catholic”. I don’t find it coincidental that “Catholic” started posting as soon as “Scrote” stopped. He’s a good little troll, learning from his past mistakes.

    Perhaps would should all do something more productive, like have a Jack n’ Coke in PZ’s honor for exposing the lunacy of Catholicism, and let the trolls go back to mutilating their own genitalia, or whatever it is that floats their boats…

  490. #490 Neural T
    July 27, 2008

    Catholic #479

    If you want true separation of church and state, then tear up the US Constitution – the rights guaranteed in it are based solely on Judeao-Christian philosophy

    It’s amazing that you could make a statement like that given the reams of scholarship and the amount of disagreement between people who spend their lives studying the texts of the Founding Fathers. It can only be because you are completely ignorant of it.

  491. #491 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    What Jeremy said is highly plausible; I concur.

  492. #492 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    Dahan,

    Simmer down, little fella.

    Okay – I won’t shove my beliefs down your throat!

    I don’t actually remember doing this, though. You’re talking as though I did.

  493. #493 raven
    July 27, 2008

    Catholic making stuff up:

    If you want true separation of church and state, then tear up the US Constitution – the rights guaranteed in it are based solely on Judeao-Christian philosophy

    That isn’t even remotely true. It was written by smart people who saw the horrors of religion run amock for 1600 years.

    In your case, the Catholic church claims to be the One True church and all the other xian sects are fake. They fought a bloody war with the Protestants over this opinion that ended a few years ago in N. Ireland after 400 years. Long time to hold a grudge really. 400 years.

    The Catholic church never gave up power. They simply lost numerous power struggles with secular power groups. Henry VIII didn’t give a rat’s ass about Anglicans, he wanted to get out from under the church.

    They also invented antisemitism and moslem bashing. At various times in the history of the church Jews were massacred for made up reasons and they tried to drive the moslems out of the middle east during the crusades.

    We don’t have to know what a Catholic world would look like. We’ve already seen it. Witches were hunted down by the 10,000′s and burned at the stake. Heretics were burned and massacred in huge numbers. Schizmatic sects and other religions were targets for attempted genocide.

    These days it is different. We no longer allow Catholics or other religions access to heavy weapons and let them have the ability to hunt down and kill whoever they want. It was a matter of self preservation and morality.

  494. #494 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    KM,

    Quit talking in riddles. You’re starting to sound like PZ.

  495. #495 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    Oooohhh…now he’s back to using “Scrote”. What a sly little troll!

  496. #496 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    John Immorales,

    You’re right. I don’t care what Dahan and anyone else of his ilk has to say. I know that my views are right.

    I say this with confidence, because I’ve been on both sides of the fence. You’re all still on one side.

  497. #497 386sx
    July 27, 2008

    How do you expect any human to understand the fullness of God’s creation?

    You have yet to establish that there is a God, and that it is able to create stuff, and that it did create stuff. Carts <- horses.

  498. #498 Scrote
    July 27, 2008

    Jeremy,

    I’m not “Catholic”, whoever that is. I simply took 30 minutes out of my evening to exercise on my Gazelle.

  499. #499 386sx
    July 27, 2008

    Carts

    Carts before horses. Thanks sorry.

  500. #500 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Heh, Jeremy. This is a fine specimen.

  501. #501 Br. Juniper
    July 27, 2008

    Prof. Myers,

    It appears you have been duped. If a consecrated host is nothing more than a cracker for you, then why the dramatics? Where was the science? I would expect rather a variety of material analyses to demonstrate that it remained bread.

    Your actions did nothing toward convincing people that there is nothing supernatural. In a way, it demonstrates that there is something to it, even if only a great cultural power, to impassion you. This “cracker” has a hold of you.

    Basic to the pursuit of science is the basis that there is knowledge to be had and the universe is not completely known. Science requires a sort of humility fundamental to the act of discovery. When it turns to arrogance it becomes stuck.

    I would ask you to consider reading up on the theology regarding the Eucharist and what it actually means. This might help you to understand what is going on here and why the Eucharist has been sacred to Christians for 2000 years and will be for as many years to come.

    I know it doesn’t make sense to you, but there is rational sense to it. For your own scientific curiousity you should do more research.

    When they pierced Christ with a nail at the crucifixion, it was because they wanted to show that He was not who he said He was. It was also because they did not want to accept the type of messiah he said we was as well. Yet that act did nothing to convince the world to their view. On the contrary, it united Christ to the world’s suffering. You have demonstrated that the body of Christ, both in the Eucharist as well as the Church, the Body of Christ, is still united in that suffering.

    Be the scientist by either pursuing your intellectual interest in this or by disregarding the Eucharist as bread on strictly materialistic grounds with lost interest. The fanfare undermines your talent as well as many of those contributing to this blog.

  502. #502 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Like I said. A fine specimen.

  503. #503 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    Indeed. Let’s propose an experiement to test on him. It will be great fun, and perhaps we can establish a hypothesis for further study.

  504. #504 Snark
    July 27, 2008

    One has to wonder, if there isn’t really something to all this Eucharist and transubstantiation stuff after all. It never didn’t manage to actually transubstantiate itself into flesh and blood, but it sure has turned a lot of brains into shit.

  505. #505 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    Of course I meant “experiment”. Typo.

    Perhaps he is now “Br. Juniper”. It’s easy to spot trolls at nearly 2 AM ET, since so few other people are on here posting. “Br. Juniper” is similar to “Fr. J”, so maybe they’re all one sockpuppet.

    Ok, hypothesis: “Trolls will stop posting if people stop replying to them.” Ready? Everybody follow along, let’s see where this goes…

  506. #506 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Well, it’s lost control of its pseudo-biochromatic elements and is changing camouflage wildly.

    Interesting.

  507. #507 386sx
    July 27, 2008

    I would ask you to consider reading up on the theology regarding the Eucharist and what it actually means. This might help you to understand what is going on here and why the Eucharist has been sacred to Christians for 2000 years and will be for as many years to come.

    No it won’t be sacred 2000 years to come. It’s too stupid!! Thanks though.

  508. #508 Br. Juniper
    July 27, 2008

    I’m not familar with the term “Trolls”, but for those Tolkein fans…

    “I put before you the one great thing to love on earth: The Blessed Sacrament. There you will find romance, glory, honor, fidelity, and the true way of all your loves on earth, and more than that…” J.R.R. Tolkien

    For those of you who don’t know, the “Blessed Sacrament” is another term for the Eucharst.

  509. #509 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    And now it makes some sort of burbling sounds.

    Interesting.

  510. #510 intelekshual
    July 27, 2008

    #508 –

    Any chance of you explaining why you think a quote by a writer of fiction is in any way relevant?

    Do you think that enjoying an artist’s work means you have to agree with all of their statements and beliefs? Because if that’s where you’re coming from with that, whew…

  511. #511 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Look at it thrash about.

  512. #512 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    After several minutes, nothing. The specimen apparently has no mind of its own, and only responds to verbal stimuli.

  513. #513 Br. Juniper
    July 27, 2008

    I’m sorry you missed the point.

    Have fun with the science. : )

  514. #514 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Hm. Wonder if it’s sentient enough to seek forage in new pastures.

    Though I know that’s a bit far-fetched.

  515. #515 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    I now propose another hypothesis: In an effort to offset the appearance of obsolescence, the specimen will post a random set of gibberish in a last-ditch effort to gain attention. However, now that I’ve said this, the cunning subject may not post anything at all in an effort to disprove the hypothesis.

    Further study is needed.

  516. #516 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Oh, well. Conjecture falsified.

    I stress that any possibility of sentience was highly speculative.

  517. #517 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    Yes! The specimen did indeed post a random set of gibberish. What next?

  518. #518 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Jeremy, we’re sure bored…

    Reduced to troll-watching.

  519. #519 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    Note: The specimen has morphed into a new identity, yet with the same tired argument that has been proven false time and again.

  520. #520 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    … ah well. Bored now.

    Bye, fool.

  521. #521 Anne Nonymous
    July 27, 2008

    I’m not familar with the term “Trolls”, but for those Tolkein fans…

    “I put before you the one great thing to love on earth: The Blessed Sacrament. There you will find romance, glory, honor, fidelity, and the true way of all your loves on earth, and more than that…” J.R.R. Tolkien

    For those of you who don’t know, the “Blessed Sacrament” is another term for the Eucharst.

    I think this right here is the most awesomest trolling in the whole damned saga. Especially the last sentence, where the troll feels the need to clarify the term “Blessed Sacrament” for the doubting masses.

    The thing I’m wondering now is, in keeping with the rules of the Tolkien universe, if we keep the troll here talking until the sun comes up will it be turned to stone?

  522. #522 Siddharth
    July 27, 2008

    I’m sorry you missed the point.

    Wait… was there a point?

    Have fun with the science. : )

    Oh, yes. We sure will :)

    There are far more awesome and useful things in science, Horatio, than in your religion.

  523. #523 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    John: Science isn’t always glamorous, sometimes we need to toil away staring at the seeming mediocrity of our test subjects.

    I’m heading out soon too, I propose that our specimen will do so as well. Unless, of course, someone else starts to provide them with verbal stimuli on which to react. In the absence of that, the specimen will seek more fertile pastures.

    See you on the flipside.

  524. #524 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Jeremy: :)

  525. #525 anon
    July 27, 2008

    Now morales is talking to himself.

  526. #526 Krystalline Apostate
    July 27, 2008

    @ 510:

    It appears you have been duped. If a consecrated host is nothing more than a cracker for you, then why the dramatics? Where was the science? I would expect rather a variety of material analyses to demonstrate that it remained bread.

    It appears you’ve not been paying attention.
    It all began w/the original story. Had the religious simply behaved as they’ve been instructed to, it would not’ve gained such momentum.
    (In case you’re wondering, I’m referring to that old adage none of you seem to be able to follow, ‘turn the other cheek’.)
    This is another sad effort @ a back-handed tu quoque. You wanted what? Actual laboratory results for a cracker being a cracker? Most of you hide behind the shield of the unknowable, that being faith, & when pinned down by evidence, claim faith is not to be questioned.
    What pray tell, would be the criterion? How is the cracker changed – besides the process of mastication & the inevitable loss of molecules?
    Please – do share, or shut up.

  527. #527 Jeremy
    July 27, 2008

    The hypothesis has been verified. After numerous minutes of inactivity, the specimen has failed to belch its usual trite, predictable blather! Indeed, it would seem the “troll” is incapable of formulating its own arguments, and depends solely on reactive comments made in response to others!

    I’m heading to bed now. Perhaps tomorrow we can repeat this experiment to seek verification or disproof. I do, however, have one final hypothesis. Since the specimen knows its adversaries are all retiring to bed, it may make one last futile effort to reply to this post in an effort to verify its own validity. How will this pan out? I guess I’ll find out tomorrow.

  528. #528 hf
    July 27, 2008

    We could have told him, and many of us did tell him

    I haven’t read every comment, of course, but I know a lot of people took the opposite tack and warned of dire consequences in this world. Yet the bullies who threatened Myers have suffered more than he has. The extra traffic will probably benefit him in the long run.

    See, Bill Donahue seems to think that fear of jerks like him society should substitute for fear of God, since his God lacks the power or desire to bully people directly. It therefore seems imperative to show others who disagree with his church that here, as with terror of the sky-man, fear is often misplaced.

  529. #529 hf
    July 27, 2008

    Stupid non-working strike tags.

  530. #530 Niobe
    July 27, 2008

    The first one is a classic, summing up the names of your family (as if you don’t know them) in an effort to scare you you that they know all these things about you, and they might drive by your house and take pictures.

    Aren’t you TERRIFIED PZ , you cephalophile? Yes.. I know all about your love of the tentacled ones. Be afraid… be very afraid…. MUAHAHA

  531. #531 shonny
    July 27, 2008

    Hello, my name is jason Larrimore, I am a 35 year old mechanic from Thomasville, AL. I am a Catholic Christian, I would like to desacrate your fat ass. I know that I shouldn’t feel that way, but you are truly ther worst kind of ignorant.Give me a call {if you are man enough} and I will come to you to deliver your ass whipping. 334-410-0611. I’m sure that you won’t call, I’m sure that you will know the truth eventually, hopefully sooner than too late. I will pray for you, even though I would really enjoy kicking your ass.

    That phone number is listed under Selma in Alabama, so is it that ‘jason’ not only is deranged, but also that he ‘isn’t man enough’ to give his real phone number??

  532. #532 nozzle 2
    July 27, 2008

    I feel lonely after seeing this on /.: http://ask.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=625181&cid=24328599

    someone reply to me just so I know that I’m not alone, in a “Trollcage.”

  533. #533 JT
    July 27, 2008

    Oh ffs.
    Of course someone had to mail you from Alabama. And of course it had to be my bloody home town.

    It’s his real phone number. The cell phones here are a bit screwy and tend to have numbers ranging for a few hundred miles. He’s stupid enough to give his real phone number.
    He’s some of the trash so common to the area, though usually it’s baptists.

    I gave him a call. I await my asswhooping with much amusement, but I’m not holding my breath.
    Typically the people that like to threaten don’t care much for backing it up.

  534. #534 clinteas
    July 27, 2008

    You sometimes get that impression here these days nozzle,very true.

    As various clever people before me have pointed out,this has shown me tho what a fringe cult the catholic church is and how deranged and incapable of rational thought its members are.
    As Ive said here before,the Pope himself would be embarrassed by the christians that have commented here.

  535. #535 tsig
    July 27, 2008

    “You guys have are all trying to figure out life by playing guessing games, hosted by the master of delusion himself: PZ Myers.

    None of you have an effing clue what life is all about. You just think you know, and make yourselves convincing by interspersing your arguments with psycho-babble in order to impress.

    You are a sad lot of wandering, lost souls who possess intelligence but no wisdom”

    I was born I will die life is what happens in between.

  536. #536 blf
    July 27, 2008

    someone reply to me just so I know that I’m not alone, in a “Trollcage.”

    Nope, sorry, no-one’s seeing the post. Why you been caged I don’t know–I haven’t been following this thread too closely.
    Assuming you are like other trolls, to get out of the cage will be very difficult, but is not impossible. Try thinking, calming down, and moving to the rational world. That doesn’t mean abandoning any belief in dogs you may have, but doing so is known to help (with the rational bit, you could still be a troll). There’s probably some de-trolling (think de-programming or de-brainwashing) help sites on the ‘net that could help?

  537. #537 Aaron
    July 27, 2008

    All of this over a cracker? Still?

    So you poked a tiny bit of Jesus. They don’t actually believe it IS Jesus, do they? How many crackers are Jesus at any given time?

  538. #538 MH
    July 27, 2008

    Looks like Chris at Mixing Memory is after some traffic.

  539. #539 Andy from Sweden
    July 27, 2008

    Hi P.Z. sorry for the shitty emails from the belivers, but I think you can make a kickass textbook of them. Just put them all together, bind them in to a book, Give it a good explaining title “The catholic way”, “Love is all around us” or just plain “Catholisism explained”, and there you go.

  540. #540 clinteas
    July 27, 2008

    MH,

    looks like he’s a dickhead too.

  541. #541 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Let me spell it out for you then.

    Atheists are NOT attempting to get anyone fired. Atheists are NOT sending people threats and death threats. Atheists are NOT trying to get people expelled from school.
    Atheists are NOT attacking anyone physically.

    Atheists are NOT attempt to silence criticism of atheism in any way, nor are they making the claim that criticism of atheism is bigotry, nor making the claim that criticism of atheism on a personal forum such as a blog is grounds for for being fired.

    Catholics are doing ALL of those things against atheists.

    All atheists are doing is using their freedom of speech to express their disagreement with what the Catholics are doing – often vociferously, even rudely and profanely, but just speech.

    No threats, no attempts to ruin others’ lives, no attempts to get others to stop saying what they want or believing what they want.

    THAT’S the difference.Let me spell it out for you then.

    Atheists are NOT attempting to get anyone fired. Atheists are NOT sending people threats and death threats. Atheists are NOT trying to get people expelled from school.
    Atheists are NOT attacking anyone physically.

    Atheists are NOT attempt to silence criticism of atheism in any way, nor are they making the claim that criticism of atheism is bigotry, nor making the claim that criticism of atheism on a personal forum such as a blog is grounds for for being fired.

    Catholics are doing ALL of those things against atheists.

    All atheists are doing is using their freedom of speech to express their disagreement with what the Catholics are doing – often vociferously, even rudely and profanely, but just speech.

    No threats, no attempts to ruin others’ lives, no attempts to get others to stop saying what they want or believing what they want.

    THAT’S the difference.

    Ever heard of the PRC? Atheist wonderland where all your dreams of religious intolerance can come true!

  542. #542 clinteas
    July 27, 2008

    @ 543

    Talk about trollcages.

  543. #543 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Trolls? Trollcages? You people will believe anything!

  544. #544 JM Inc,
    July 27, 2008

    Wow. I’ve never used the phrase “demented fuckwits” before, but if ever there were an occasion, your continuing torrents of e-mail would be it. It’s remarkable how they all seem absolutely hell-bent on proving your point for you.

  545. #545 Logicel
    July 27, 2008

    Solzhenisyn clearly establishes that millions were slaughtered because of the atheistic motivation to eliminate religion.
    ______

    Religites think that’s scary? What is happening at present is even more frightening to you religites–whittling away at the foundation of your pathetic, primitive beliefs through argument, debate, snark, ridicule, and political lobbying. You are finally being confronted and challenged PEACEFULLY for the complete asshattery of which you professed. This time, there is no persecution, just honest, direct calling out on your non-evidence based beliefs.

  546. #546 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Wow. I’ve never used the phrase “demented fuckwits” before, but if ever there were an occasion, your continuing torrents of e-mail would be it. It’s remarkable how they all seem absolutely hell-bent on proving your point for you.

    I don’t see what the drama is all about – it’s a real stretch to call these e-mails “hate-mail”. Apart from the anti-semite and the guy whot wants PZ to rot (which he will do some day so how can you call that hate?) there’s no real hatred being spouted. You guys need to get a grip on reality and stop having delusions of persecution.

  547. #547 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    Ah, the drooling one is back.

  548. #548 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Ah, the drooling one is back.

    Stop with the hatred!

  549. #549 Logicel
    July 27, 2008

    Mr Juniper (I already have a brother), you gabbling limpet! (italicized to give credit to Etha Williams OM whom I think either originated or consistently used that phrase and sadly has not been seen in these parts for a while)

  550. #550 Logicel
    July 27, 2008

    Mr. Juniper writes: You have demonstrated that the body of Christ, both in the Eucharist as well as the Church, the Body of Christ, is still united in that suffering.
    ______

    Yup, that sure sounds like the immoral Cult of Misery (Catholicism). Not only do they rejoice in suffering, they pretend that it is moral to embrace the concept of a scapegoat (and this is for a sin supposedly committed by someone else way back). Two very immoral concepts that no court of law will support (blaming someone else for something they did not do and allowing others to take the punishment for a crime).

    And safe words are not even allowed in this cult of misery, unlike in SM practices. If the cult of misery was as savvy as SM, Jesus would have been spared his horrid death.

  551. #551 clinteas
    July 27, 2008

    Logicel,

    agree that Etha is sadly missed,she seems rather busy exploring classical music atm.

    The term gabbling limpet I believe was coined by Kseniya.

  552. #552 StoopiditKillz
    July 27, 2008

    I just find it pretty freaking retarded that Catholics are getting worked up over this stupid cracker, yet they and every other form of Christianity feels they are better than everyone else and that they can condemn someone to “hell” because they have different beliefs. You have no idea how many times my sister gets berated from a Christian because she is a witch and proudly wears her pentacle. Anyway, I think this whole thing is freaking hypocritical on the Catholics part.

  553. #553 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Two very immoral concepts that no court of law will support (blaming someone else for something they did not do and allowing others to take the punishment for a crime).

    I agree. Atheists do that all the time.

  554. #554 clinteas
    July 27, 2008

    @ 554

    //You have no idea how many times my sister gets berated from a Christian because she is a witch//

    There goes another irony meter !
    LOL

  555. #555 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    You have no idea how many times my sister gets berated from a Christian because she is a witch and proudly wears her pentacle.

    I don’t believe it. Dram, drama, drama!!

  556. #556 Jeeves
    July 27, 2008

    So it has come to pass that the cracker has symbolic meaning for everyone. For Catholics, the body of Christ. For atheists, it symbolizes the stupidest parts of suspended reason. I’m not saying the cracker has any inherent qualities beyond a bland taste and five calories. However, can we all move on now? PZ will continue to get foaming e-mails and if he wants to keep posting them, fine. But to keep making cracker comments (even below posts where crackers aren’t relevant) shows you’re paying way too much regard to something that requires none.

  557. #557 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    *Sigh* Again, for the eleventy-first time, but ever hopeful that it is news to some:

    Totalitarian states like the Maoist* People’s Republic of China and the un-mourned Stalinist USSR merely replace(d) cults of Gods with cults of States. The various forms of Marxism and Nazism, with their received texts, faultless Great Leaders, suppression of free inquiry and press, and fatal dedication to ideologies over reason became state religions as surely as Catholicism in Isabella’s Spain, Protestantism in colonial New England, or Islam in the mullahs’ Afghanistan. Maoists and Soviets are (or were) not free-thinking, reason-based atheists: they ruthlessly suppress(ed) religion because they hate(ed) the competition. (The Nazis, unique in so many ways, learned to work with a few flavors of Christianity when it suited their purposes; otherwise, well, the rest is history…)

    You cannot tell the difference between the former USSR or the current Islamic Republic of Iran any more than the other animals could tell the difference between the men and the pigs at the end of Animal Farm. Blind devotion to a book, a political model, or a man is the same whether the book is the Qur’an, the Bible, Das Kapital, or Mao’s Little Red Book; whether the man is a pope, an ayatollah, or a party chairman.

    The knock at the door in the middle of the night is the same whether it is by the left hand or the right hand.

    * We will see how long their totalitarianism lasts as their economy and borders continue to open up. One hopes the answer is “not very”…

  558. #558 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    However, can we all move on now? PZ will continue to get foaming e-mails and if he wants to keep posting them, fine.

    There are few,if any, foaming hate e-mails. It’s all about making a mountain out of a mole-hill. It wouldn’t surprise me if most of the alleged “hate-mail” originated with PZ’s drones to provide “evidence” for their delusional sense of persecution.

  559. #559 Elfstone
    July 27, 2008

    For Anne and anyone else curious, here’s a review of “Mere Christianity”

    http://www.ebonmusings.org/atheism/books/merechristianity.html

  560. #560 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    And, preemptively:

    No. “Atheism” is not a religion in any way because there is no ideology, no received texts, no Great Leaders or flawless prophets, no orthodoxy, no heterodoxy.

    Just… no god.

    No idea or person or text is beyond question or examination. Respected, sure, even revered maybe, but only if they have earned it.

  561. #561 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    For Anne and anyone else curious, here’s a review of “Mere Christianity”

    Yes, think for yourself, but this is what you should really think!!

  562. #562 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    “Atheism” is not a religion in any way because there is no ideology, no received texts, no Great Leaders or flawless prophets, no orthodoxy, no heterodoxy.

    It’s the Cult of Self-Proclaimed Rationality, without proof thereof.

  563. #563 SEF
    July 27, 2008

    @ Anne #308

    I think that to be an Atheist requires the same degree of faith as to be religious.

    No, you don’t really think it, you parrot it. There’s a difference.

    the theory that there is no God is equally without merit.

    Untrue. For a start, it’s not just your particular idea of a god but all the other specified versions of gods which have already been disproved by the evidence of reality.

    Meanwhile, a hypothetical non-specific god is too vague (generally deliberately so) to be open to falsification. However, such a being is also not honestly open to worship either since, by definition, it lacks the necessary specified properties on which to frame any worship. As soon as you claim specific properties for it (eg that it is deserving of and wants to be worshipped and in a specific way) you open the concept up to falsification and to the rather obvious observation that you’re only making it all up anyway.

    the only intellectually honest position would be Agnosticism.

    Untrue. That’s generally a dishonest, hypocritical and cowardly position – a term used in self-description by those who don’t want to apply the demonised label of atheist to themselves, because they would risk much persecution by the many and varied religious zealots running things and sometimes because they’ve fallen for the falsehoods being told about atheists by theists.

    The original concept of an Agnostic was someone who firmly believed god(s) existed but that it/their properties couldn’t be known. A modern agnostic is someone who professes to be sitting on the fence over whether gods even exist at all. Yet they don’t generally engage in religiously worshipping all gods ever described just in case one or more of them is real. Nor do they really invest a significant part of their time in investigating which of all possible gods might be real. Instead, for all practical everyday purposes, they behave as though no gods exist – as though the preponderance of evidence had adequately settled the question for the time being in favour of there being no gods to concern them. Ie they are atheists in all but name.

    Now, should any gods ever bother to suddenly start existing (that self-creation from nothing and nowhere apparently being one of the things to be expected of some flavours of them), we might bother to investigate their claims to the term “god” and, separately, decide whether they are worthy of worship or contempt (the latter option being appropriate for the sort of specific gods that religious people around the world have made up so far). Since no such beings are currently around though, the only rational response is to be atheistic.

    As I mentioned elsewhere, the combination which best describes my view-point is agnostic atheist anti-theist.

  564. #564 El Herring
    July 27, 2008

    Moses #439:

    I know the proper way to worship El is with HUMAN SACRFICE.

    Really? I had no idea people were making sacrifices to me. Please stop this immediately, it’s embarrassing.

    If you really feel the need perform sacrifices, I suggest limiting the subjects to herrings. That would be far more appropriate!

  565. #565 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    Baba @ 564:

    It’s the Cult of Self-Proclaimed Rationality, without proof thereof.

    Cute!

    There is, for me, insufficient proof that there are any beings that I would call a “god.” Is there absolutely nothing behind the idea that is behind the idea of what someone else might call a god? I have no idea, but there is not any good evidence that there is such a being.

    I used to say that I was an agnostic, but have decided that it was too weasely. I don’t know that there is not anything but I do not have one particle of doubt that whatever there might be, it is not the Abrahamic God.

    Or Thor.

  566. #566 John Morales
    July 27, 2008

    bgbaysjr, FYI: you’re feeding a troll.

  567. #567 SEF
    July 27, 2008

    @ Anne #328

    And since I asked the Atheist to read “mere Christianity”, I will read “The God Delusion”.

    If you genuinely mean that (despite the smiley face), then more credit to you. Note that you do actually have to think properly about and give due consideration to the import of the words, rather than just read them ritualistically, in order for it to count though. Reading comprehension is a lot more than just mouthing syllables in sequence.

  568. #568 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    John: I know — sorry! A moment of weakness that won’t happen again…

  569. #569 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Cute!

    There is, for me, insufficient proof that there are any beings that I would call a “god.” Is there absolutely nothing behind the idea that is behind the idea of what someone else might call a god? I have no idea, but there is not any good evidence that there is such a being.

    Thanx!! Have you measured your rationality lately?

  570. #570 Logicel
    July 27, 2008

    Is Scrote some sort of twisted Zen Yogi?

    Get your finger out of my 3rd eye asshole.

    Posted by: Steve_C | July 27, 2008 12:50 AM
    ______

    Most excellent, I am chortling here like a, well, a v happy person–inner peace and outer peace abounding.

    The approach taken by Mr J/Juniper and the other posting religites who lamely substitute rationalizing for rationality have been solidly dismantled by PZs famous The Courtier’s Reply:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pharyngula_(blog)#The_Courtier.27s_Reply

  571. #571 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    bgbaysjr, FYI: you’re feeding a troll.

    Trolls do not exist!!

  572. #572 SEF
    July 27, 2008

    Re: “Mere Christianity” by C.S.Lewis

    It took me quite a while (and I had to google repeatedly rather than look in the expected places such as Project Gutenberg) given the claim that that book is a classic, but I appear to have found an online copy of it – and before that I found an audio fragment retained by the BBC and the information that the “book” was really put together from radio show transcripts. I also found a critical review of it.

  573. #573 satanhimself
    July 27, 2008

    The interesting thing about Stikeleather is that not only is he apparently a recent CONVERT to Catholicism (can you imagine that, actually converting *to* that depressing set of beliefs?), but he is working on a PhD in *accounting* at Pitt’s Business School. (My atheist daughter goes to Pitt.)

    Accounting! Boy, *that* really heals the sick, feeds the hungry (himself, probably), and clothes the naked!

    By the way, take a look at an interesting development in Pennsylvania, and don’t miss the comment, and click on a closeup of the photo: http://panonbelievers.blogspot.com/

  574. #574 PZ Myers
    July 27, 2008

    Yes, Shas and Scrote are the same annoyingly supercilious person.

  575. #575 Joe M
    July 27, 2008

    I would like to desacrate your fat ass.

    This is comedy gold! Don’t drop the soap in Catholic showers, I guess!

  576. #576 Kate
    July 27, 2008

    Joe M, that’s something most people have known for a while now… bending over near a Catholic male is a dangerous sport, and not one you want to undertake without proper protection!

  577. #577 antaresrichard
    July 27, 2008

    “Is nothing sacred?”

    Gahan Wilson comes to mind.

  578. #578 the strangest brew
    July 27, 2008

    #560

    “There are few,if any, foaming hate e-mails. It’s all about making a mountain out of a mole-hill. It wouldn’t surprise me if most of the alleged “hate-mail” originated with PZ’s drones to provide “evidence” for their delusional sense of persecution.”

    Delusion is a truly religious thing….this fiasco has really exposed the reality of jebus and his sunbeams…

    Jebus is a construct, he obviously does not have woo woo powers as advertised, otherwise he would have made all the RC’s wet dreams come true by now, unless of course he is highly incompetant, which cannot, of course, be ruled out.

    As for the homicidal fundie sunbeams, they are just mentally sick bunnies with shit for brains…who obviously enjoy threatening folks, and if that does not work then threaten the families, especially the ones that do not share their point of view on religious claptrap.

    Because these little heroes actually misunderstand their own religion…bit like the Muslims that use the koran to justify suicide bombing…that is easy to quantify…

    What actually in the Roman Catholic religion sanctifies the use of lies and physical threats against non-believers in their fairy tale version of events?.

    There must be something specific there because the RC’s have done it since the crusades…and they seem extraordinary proud of it.

    That things are made up to con and control the followers, is true of every religion, but because the idiots actually buy the nonsense does not mean it is not made up, by the sexually inadequate socially challenged men they call priests.
    Claiming infallibility is just the church covering it’s own arse,
    and claiming injured innocence and religious intolerance is not a winning hand…not any more…folks are not quite as gullible as they once were.

    Thing is… tis far too late to attempt to lie for damage control…the truth is out there.

    Fun seeing them squirm though…sad….but fun!

  579. #579 SEF
    July 27, 2008

    @#355

    hardly anyone remembers to not believe in poor Amaterasu

    Interesting, since I regard her as being one of the significantly less despicable of deity concepts. Perhaps that’s why she doesn’t attract attention these days – she doesn’t inspire enough hatred and violence to have actual followers and hence her non-existence doesn’t need mentioning. Thor had plenty of violence to attract worshippers (and followers of the Asatru religion do still exist).

    Hmm… the idea that “nice gods don’t get worshipped” would possibly be worthy of investigation. It would certainly fit in with the psychological basis of religion being fear (as of an abusive parent) and also greed (since the nice god would give you stuff regardless).

  580. #580 Logicel
    July 27, 2008

    CS Lewis, instead of devising a baloney detection kit (a la Carl Sagan), ate the baloney with great gusto, regurgitating slimy, masticated globs of meandering, circular rationalizing while passing it off as some lovely elegantly prepared dinner of rationality that one just can’t wait to tuck in. For those equipped with baloney detection kits, we take one look at his mangled reasoning and easily refrain from gobbling it up.

  581. #581 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Delusion is a truly religious thing….this fiasco has really exposed the reality of jebus and his sunbeams…

    Jebus is a construct, he obviously does not have woo woo powers as advertised, otherwise he would have made all the RC’s wet dreams come true by now, unless of course he is highly incompetant, which cannot, of course, be ruled out.

    As for the homicidal fundie sunbeams, they are just mentally sick bunnies with shit for brains…who obviously enjoy threatening folks, and if that does not work then threaten the families, especially the ones that do not share their point of view on religious claptrap.

    Because these little heroes actually misunderstand their own religion…bit like the Muslims that use the koran to justify suicide bombing…that is easy to quantify…

    What actually in the Roman Catholic religion sanctifies the use of lies and physical threats against non-believers in their fairy tale version of events?.

    There must be something specific there because the RC’s have done it since the crusades…and they seem extraordinary proud of it.

    That things are made up to con and control the followers, is true of every religion, but because the idiots actually buy the nonsense does not mean it is not made up, by the sexually inadequate socially challenged men they call priests.
    Claiming infallibility is just the church covering it’s own arse,
    and claiming injured innocence and religious intolerance is not a winning hand…not any more…folks are not quite as gullible as they once were.

    Thing is… tis far too late to attempt to lie for damage control…the truth is out there.

    Fun seeing them squirm though…sad….but fun!

    You’re foaming! Stop posting PZ hate-mail!

  582. #582 Iain Walker
    July 27, 2008

    Anne (Comment #340):

    Atheism is a belief system, the belief that there is nothing worthy of belief.

    That would be nihilism (in ethics) or radical skepticism (in epistemology). Neither is the same as atheism, which is simply the belief (on whatever grounds, and held with whatever degree of confidence) that gods do not exist.

    Please learn what a term means before pontificating on it. To do otherwise risks embarrassment.

  583. #583 JohnB
    July 27, 2008

    I am a Catholic Christian, I would like to desacrate your fat ass… I will pray for you, even though I would really enjoy kicking your ass.

    So…that’s what “Christians” really mean when they say they will pray for you? Hmm, learn something new everyday.

  584. #584 Damian with an a
    July 27, 2008

    If anyone wishes to see only this:

    Comment by Baba blocked. [unkill]?[show comment]

    install both Greasemonkey [for firefox] and killfile and you can make it happen.

    There’s something quite cathartic about not feeding the trolls.

  585. #585 Logicel
    July 27, 2008

    Clinteas, thanks for the info about Etha OM–glad to hear that she is enjoying herself and working hard for something she wants. Ah, so it was clever Kseniya OM who coined the supremely wonderful descriptive, gabbling limpet.

    And I am ever so chuffed that that an upper court in OZ ruled against those unconstitutional prior rules pertaining to the Papal nut’s visit.

    Baba, you gabbling limpet!

  586. #586 John C. Randolph
    July 27, 2008

    I’ve read Lewis’ Mere Christianity.

    That work is an excellent example of the difference between being intelligent and being articulate. Lewis was a skilled writer, but his arguments are still nothing more than wishful thinking to support his emotional position.

    -jcr

  587. #587 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    SEF @ 581:

    Hmm… the idea that “nice gods don’t get worshipped” would possibly be worthy of investigation. It would certainly fit in with the psychological basis of religion being fear (as of an abusive parent) and also greed (since the nice god would give you stuff regardless).

    I am always glad to see the “religious believers as abused children” meme repeated. I mean, if most iterations of God the Father were a real father, Child Protective Services would have taken us away…

    And bless Amaterasu’s heart: Too good for her own good, or at least, for her continued worship… thanks for the image! What little I know about Japanese religion attitudes seems almost… reasonable. As I recall, some aspects of life are attended to with Shinto rites (especially marriage and birth), others with Buddhist rites (especially death), but very few of the Japanese people I know (I live in Honolulu) seem to take much of it literally.

  588. #588 SEF
    July 27, 2008

    @#370

    that god-awful “lunatic, liar or Lord” argument

    Yes, C.S.Lewis himself (and anyone who falls for it) has to be rather stupid, insane or dishonest to omit the obvious “or fictional character” from that set of options. There would have been lots of real people called Jesus or similar back then (as now) but none matching the actual claims made.

    In the Snow White account, the evil stepmother who claimed to consult a magic mirror also has to have been a lunatic, liar or a witch-queen (the equivalent of “lord” in the magic-using sense as well as matching the royalty sense) as long as you carefully omit the rather obvious option of “fictional character”.

  589. #589 John C. Randolph
    July 27, 2008

    the wafer rose above the water, and Jesus appeared.

    So, you can re-hydrate Jesus by boiling a cracker?

    Well, why doesn’t the church just do THAT every sunday? How could anyone remain a skeptic in the face of such a demonstration?

    I put saltines in my chicken soup from time to time, but all they do is get soggy.

    -jcr

  590. #590 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    Re “lunatic, liar or Lord”:

    I always wondered why “nice guy, wildly lied about” was also not an option. It is sad, how small some people’s world is…

  591. #591 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Baba, you gabbling limpet!

    Limpets have vocal chords! You’re irrational.

  592. #592 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    In the Snow White account, the evil stepmother who claimed to consult a magic mirror also has to have been a lunatic, liar or a witch-queen (the equivalent of “lord” in the magic-using sense as well as matching the royalty sense) as long as you carefully omit the rather obvious option of “fictional character”.

    Like the fictional characters that are posting PZ hate-mail?

  593. #593 John C. Randolph
    July 27, 2008

    Brother Juniper, you wrote:

    I would ask you to consider reading up on the theology regarding the Eucharist and what it actually means.

    and I would recommend that you in turn read Dr. Myers’ description of the Courtier’s Reply.

    -jcr

  594. #594 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    I put saltines in my chicken soup from time to time, but all they do is get soggy.

    Yummy! I’m skeptical that you can prove the exiestence of your rationality.

  595. #595 Logicel
    July 27, 2008

    Anne’s equating atheism with not believing in anything is a common fallacy. Like many atheists, I embrace, accept, hold special many aspects of living and being a human.

    Supporters of religious superstitions need to be able to recognize that atheists are not for the most part nihilists. And even more importantly, they themselves, if they accepted the existence of a personal god that created you for a purpose and is able to watch your every move and monitor every thought and emotion as being highly improbable, they can also as well live happy and meaningful lives.

    Excerpted from The God Delusion, p 1:

    I suspect – well, I am sure – that there are lots of people out there who have been brought up in some religion or other, are unhappy in it, don’t believe it, or are worried about the evils that are done in its name; people who feel vague yearnings to leave their parents’ religion and wish they could, but just don’t realize that leaving is an option. If you are one of them, this book is for you. It is intended to raise consciousness – raise consciousness to the fact that to be an atheist is an realistic aspiration, and a brave and splendid one. You can be an atheist who is happy, balanced, moral, and intellectually fulfilled.

  596. #596 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Like many atheists, I embrace, accept, hold special many aspects of living and being a human.

    Like Peter Singer. Heil!

  597. #597 OctoberMermaid
    July 27, 2008

    Pretty sure Baba’s just joking around, so it seems more like he’s doing, I don’t know, “gentle trolling” or something?

    Better than the real trolls or, saints preserve us, the people who actually believe the fairy tales.

  598. #598 Logicel
    July 27, 2008

    Limpets have vocal chords! You’re irrational.

    Posted by: Baba

    _____

    Here’s a crumb of knowledge for you my dear trollish godsoaked baba (I certainly prefer the rum-soaked variety):

    Another dictionary definition for limpet is one that clings persistently. Referring to your religiously superstitious ilk as limpets is metaphorical, we are not under the delusion that you are a marine gastropod mollusk.

  599. #599 anthropic
    July 27, 2008

    I suspect Buba, um…. Baba, is 12, although it’s entirely possible he’s any age and just has a shrunken brain. In any event, it’s clear he’s fishing for reaction. Pure troll.

    And I just fed him a morsel. Dammit. :(

  600. #600 Logicel
    July 27, 2008

    OctoberMermaid, a troll is a troll is a troll and baba’s raison d’etre on these threads is to ply a short-and-sour version of tu quoque.

  601. #601 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Here’s a crumb of knowledge for you my dear trollish godsoaked baba (I certainly prefer the rum-soaked variety):

    I love it when you talk dirty! Please say something rational, show me it’s true!

    Better than the real trolls or, saints preserve us, the people who actually believe the fairy tales.

    How dare you! I am a real troll!

  602. #602 SEF
    July 27, 2008

    @#479

    If you want true separation of church and state, then tear up the US Constitution – the rights guaranteed in it are based solely on Judeao-Christian philosophy

    Untrue – but a lie often repeated by the relevant religious people for all its well documented falsity:

    commandments of Bible vs Solon
    Treaty with Tripoli
    a lawyer comments

    UnSAnians got their ideas of law largely from the UK (despite the occasion being one of rejecting UK royalty) and the UK law was in turn largely based on Roman law (something which certainly used to be taught in Law School in the UK) and the Romans in turn got many ideas from the ancient Greeks. Plus there’s always been a certain amount of the blindingly obvious to such things, which thus went into Common Law as well as into religions as those were invented (even though they dishonestly pretended ownership of the ideas afterwards).

  603. #603 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    I suspect Buba, um…. Baba, is 12, although it’s entirely possible he’s any age and just has a shrunken brain. In any event, it’s clear he’s fishing for reaction. Pure troll.

    Buba? That’s my brother. He’s 12, I’m 5. But I admire your critical thinking skills.

    And I just fed him a morsel. Dammit. :(

    More coooookies!!! God Bless.

  604. #604 Laser Potato
    July 27, 2008

    Very well then. If he’s a real troll, if we cut him into bits he should regenerate in 7 days (according to the 1977 edition of the AD&D Monster Manual)

  605. #605 Nerd of Redhead
    July 27, 2008

    Let the disemvoweling begin.

  606. #606 Logicel
    July 27, 2008

    anthropic, because of your user id, I wonder if you have read, or if you have not read, perhaps it would behoove you to hunt down the July/August issue of Analog Science Fiction and Fact and delight in a science fact article on the anthropic principle in addition to a clever short story titled: The Challenge of the Anthrophic Universe, both penned by the physicist, Carl Frederick.

    Second paragraph of the following link gives a summary of the articles:

    http://www.analogsf.com/0807_8/issue_07_8.shtml

  607. #607 Dahan
    July 27, 2008

    PZ,

    You list Stupidity as an offense punishable by tossing into the dungeon. Also, Sockpuppetry. Hasn’t Baba shown enough of both t get tossed?

  608. #608 Steve_C
    July 27, 2008

    Don’t feed the Babeller… the BaBABAboozlaer… the drooling Baba…

    Don’t babies call their pacifiers babas?

  609. #609 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Very well then. If he’s a real troll, if we cut him into bits he should regenerate in 7 days (according to the 1977 edition of the AD&D Monster Manual)

    Just kidding, trolls don’t exist – you guys will believe anything!

    Let the disemvoweling begin.

    Nooooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!!

  610. #610 Laser Potato
    July 27, 2008

    *throws Baba into a pit full of angry cobras*
    “So, you can re-hydrate Jesus by boiling a cracker?”
    That reminds me of an old gag gift: “Dehydrated water. Instructions: empty tin into bowl of water, stir and enjoy.”

  611. #611 SC
    July 27, 2008

    Steve_C,

    Install greasemonkey for firefox.

    This has been a reminder. :)

  612. #612 Logicel
    July 27, 2008

    baba is probably that intuition-addicted, anti-intellectual shaz/scote sock puppet.

  613. #613 Torbjörn Larsson, OM
    July 27, 2008

    do you all fantasize about raping and murdering people? Please stop reading the Old Testament!

    somewhere well above 12,000 hate mail messages from religious people, mostly Catholic; two reasonable messages from Catholics who said that while they are unshaken in their faith, they approve of my opposition to cracker idolatry;

    While it isn’t a water tight test by far, I’m fairly sure that the reactions from this religious group has gone towards confirming Dawkins’ conclusion that adhering to religious dogma is hurtful for ones mind. I would thank them for their willing cooperation if I wasn’t so disgusted by them.

    Say, what would be a current description of their utter failure to resemble sanity? CrackerGate, al-Qracker attacks, … ?

  614. #614 Vorvadoss
    July 27, 2008

    I’m happy I live in Scandinavia, where most of the people don’t go batshit crazy over stupid superstitions. Following this string of events is interesting, but I’m getting kinda worried about the state of the States. It’s good to know there are loads of rational people there, though.

  615. #615 Dahan
    July 27, 2008

    Logicel at 614,

    Yeah, I had the same thought. The stupid is almost identical.

  616. #616 SEF
    July 27, 2008

    @ raven #493

    Schizmatic sects and other religions were targets for attempted genocide.

    Since they’re not really genetic groupings as such, perhaps it should be called secticide. Then mass killing within one’s own religous cult would be insecticide. ;-)

  617. #617 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    It’s good to know there are loads of rational people there, though.

    What, here??? I’ve seen no evidence.

  618. #618 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    baba is probably that intuition-addicted, anti-intellectual shaz/scote sock puppet.

    I sensed that you would say something like that.

  619. #619 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Since they’re not really genetic groupings as such, perhaps it should be called secticide. Then mass killing within one’s own religous cult would be insecticide. ;-)

    Trollcage!!!

  620. #620 Vorvadoss
    July 27, 2008

    Baba, I’m starting to think you truly derive some sort of satisfaction out of your inane comments.

  621. I’m thinking of starting an atheist church. We’ll all gather together (preferrably someplace where they have a liquor license) and come up with catchy phrases to piss off the non-unbelievers like “Hate the belief; love the believer” and “I’ll think for you.”

  622. #622 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    That reminds me of an old gag gift: “Dehydrated water. Instructions: empty tin into bowl of water, stir and enjoy.”

    Similarly for proof of rationality; profess atheism, become obnoxious, adhere to blog of the most pompously self-proclaimed rationalists, pretend to know more about the religions you hate than you actually do, adopt policy of totalitarian intolerance, et voila!! You’re rational!!!!

    Or, simply proclaim it without providing proof.

  623. #623 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Baba, I’m starting to think……..

    About time! No, I don’t believe you.

  624. #624 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    I’m thinking of starting an atheist church. We’ll all gather together (preferrably someplace where they have a liquor license) and come up with catchy phrases to piss off the non-unbelievers like “Hate the belief; love the believer” and “I’ll think for you.”

    How about this……”renounce your religion or we’ll put you in the gulag”?

  625. #625 David Wiener
    July 27, 2008

    #501

    They did not pierce Jesus’ hands to prove he could bleed. That was simply the way the Roman’s dealt with criminals. See:

    http://www.carlsbadnm.com/sleeman/Story/rcrucify.htm

    or

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crucifixion

    or just google “roman crucifixion” and read.

    This is really a form of projection, which is performed by religions ad nauseam. Meaning is added to things that had nothing to do with the meaning being added.

    Nice try.

    Regards,

    David

  626. #626 C R Stamey
    July 27, 2008

    The only church I’ve found that comes close to backing up their claims:

    http://www.thechurchofgoogle.org/

    btw, I love greasemonkey and the killfile. I recommend them. I’m too old to exhaust myself feeding hungry trolls. Sleep well in your cage babatroll.

  627. #627 BlueIndependent
    July 27, 2008

    “How about this……”renounce your religion or we’ll put you in the gulag”?”

    Ah, another willing to evince his lack of understanding for history, and the real machinations behind what happened.

    Yet another person who doesn’t get it.

  628. #628 Rayven Alandria
    July 27, 2008

    I will post one quick note before I head off to a meeting.

    For those who think Anne (the theist one) is a nice person who plans to stick around and and have genuinely productive conversations…give it some time.

    What you mistakenly see as politeness is someone being unbelievably arrogant and condescending. Her *politeness* is not a respect for your views, it is a reflection of a lofty position (in her mind), of a superior being lowering themselves to talk to the lost and evil creatures that live beneath her. She does not interact with you because she cares about you, she interacts with you to reinforce her delusion that she is morally superior.

    If she chooses to stay, the veil will drop soon and you will see that she is exactly like Lily. (who knows, she may even be Lily.)

  629. #629 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    btw, I love greasemonkey and the killfile. I recommend them. I’m too old to exhaust myself feeding hungry trolls. Sleep well in your cage babatroll.,

    A closed mind is a dead mind.

  630. #630 Laser Potato
    July 27, 2008
  631. #631 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Ah, another willing to evince his lack of understanding for history, and the real machinations behind what happened.

    Yet another person who doesn’t get it.

    In the tradition of Dawkins, Harris et al.

  632. #632 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    I will post one quick note before I head off to a meeting.

    For those who think Anne (the theist one) is a nice person who plans to stick around and and have genuinely productive conversations…give it some time.

    What you mistakenly see as politeness is someone being unbelievably arrogant and condescending. Her *politeness* is not a respect for your views, it is a reflection of a lofty position (in her mind), of a superior being lowering themselves to talk to the lost and evil creatures that live beneath her. She does not interact with you because she cares about you, she interacts with you to reinforce her delusion that she is morally superior.

    If she chooses to stay, the veil will drop soon and you will see that she is exactly like Lily. (who knows, she may even be Lily.)

    Reveal more, Oh Great Seer!!

  633. #633 Laser Potato
    July 27, 2008

    Here’s a fun game: list the logical fallacies Baba commits.
    “In the tradition of Dawkins, Harris et al.”
    Projection.
    “A closed mind is a dead mind.”
    Doggerel #4, “Closed-minded”.
    http://rockstarramblings.blogspot.com/2006/05/doggerel-4-closed-minded.html

  634. How about this……”renounce your religion or we’ll put you in the gulag”?

    Posted by: Baba

    Let me think… umm… No. You’re free to go on practicing your silly beliefs (and we’re free to go on ridiculing them).

    Gulag? Oh, I get it. *groan*

    The old “Stalin was an atheist!” cannard doesn’t work until you can demonstrate where Stalin killed anyone in the name of atheism. What atheist doctrine compels its followers to commit murder in order to achieve a stated goal? And please don’t say Darwinism because what Stalin did violated the concept of natural selection. “Natural” being the key word here.

    Stalin had a mustache. Hitler had a mustache. I can just as equally declare that they killed millions in the name of their respective mustaches.

    Besides, I doubt seriously whether my church would consider using, “Hitlter was a Catholic/Christian.” Unlike you, we don’t wish to replace our secular government with one that would allow such things. It must really chaff your ass not having a theocracy.

  635. #635 MH
    July 27, 2008

    CS Lewis “lunatic, liar or Lord”

    What about “misunderstood, mythologized or made-up”?

  636. #636 Carlie
    July 27, 2008

    And with the gulag comment, baba has laid on the last straw to break the camel’s back. After trudging through innumerable trolls of all shapes, creeds, and levels of idiocy, I finally can’t take it any more. My greasemonkey has a new script. Now I just see lovely “blocked” comments everywhere I look. Buh-bye, baba!

  637. #637 Bubba Sixpack
    July 27, 2008

    So there’s an argument going on over whether it is a wafer or a cracker? Well that makes a big difference, whether you are a Wafer Worshipper, or just a Cracker Caresser.

  638. #638 C R Stamey
    July 27, 2008

    Comment by Baba blocked. [unkill]?[show comment]

    NOW peace is with me. Thanks for nothing, Jebus.

  639. #639 Vorvadoss
    July 27, 2008

    Baba:
    I get you now. It is oh, so hilarious to incite reactions from people. Here’s one comment for you that is on the same level as you operate on: You are a poopy-head.
    I know you’ll have a snarky comeback on the level of intellect of the comment and I know I shouldn’t feed the troll, but hey, everyone has got to eat.
    I forgive you.
    Times a thousand.(or more if needed)

  640. #640 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    *sigh*
    Baba, Baba, Baba.

    What? What?What?

  641. #641 Fr.J
    July 27, 2008

    Transcript from CA (Cathoholics Anonymous)

    Fr.J: Hi, my name is Father John and I’m a Cathoholic.

    Group: Hi, Father John.

    Fr.J: I’m not a real Father, in the same way Little John wasn’t little. But. I’m here because I have a wafer problem…

    Group: sighs…preach it brother..

    Fr.J: It all started when I was a baby and they washed my brain in the first Sacrament, the baptism. Every since then I’ve been addicted to wafers, wine, and guilty masturbation.

    Group: We’ve all been there…(laughing)..

    Fr.J: It got worse, I’d go to chat rooms and atheist websites to preach the word, but I was mocked just like my Savior in Luke 22:63. I would try to witness to them but they were wicked and cursed me. They would ask me questions that I tried to answer, just like is says in 1 Pet. 3:15 but I could not answer them faithfully….I was not equipped.

    Sandi: I know that’s right…I tried myself to…(Interrupted)…

    Fr.J: Shut the fuck up Sandi, it’s my turn, besides 1 Cor 14:34 says “women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says” and again in 1 Tim 2:12 it says, “I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent.” So learn your place woman!!!

    Sandi: But..I…

    Fr.J. and Group: Shut up!

    Fr.J: Ok, where was I…Oh yes, I like wafers…wine…choir b…err…singing…and the internets…

    To be continued…

  642. #642 Laser Potato
    July 27, 2008

    Bo-bo-bo Bo Bo-bo-bo!
    say whaaaaat?

  643. #643 MH
    July 27, 2008

    I just installed Greasemonkey and the Killfile script. One click and it’s bye-bye Baba.

    Cool extension. Thanks for the recommendation!

    {sigh} I love Firefox.

  644. #644 KM
    July 27, 2008

    Baba:

    Your Shas is showing.

    Until your next trip to the dungeon, Baba, meet killfile. Killfile, meet Baba. I’m sure you two will get along swimmingly.

  645. #645 Philboid
    July 27, 2008

    “Impotent fist-waving” sounds vaguely masturbatory, and nothing at all like the important fist-waving you’ve been doing since crackergate commenced.

    *love you*

  646. #646 Neural T
    July 27, 2008

    Damn. We need to make better use of that IRC channel (#pharyngula on irc.synirc.net) or set a new one up like on Dalnet.

  647. #647 Bubba Sixpack
    July 27, 2008

    So is this university going to fully investigate Crackergate? Round up all of the evil-doers. It’s kind of expected with the new attitude:

    Political Correctness: Bad; Dogmatic Correctness: Good.

  648. #648 Nick Gotts
    July 27, 2008

    MH@645 – Me too. doesn’t the tread look better!

  649. #649 Paper Hand
    July 27, 2008

    #589:
    There does seem to be some to be some who seriously believe at least some aspects of Shinto, whether or not they take the particular legends seriously. And in the 40′s, there were quite a few people willing to die for Shinto. Even suicide-bombers, the kamikaze!

    However, one thing I find interesting is this: http://www.isejingu.or.jp/english/myth/myth1.htm

    From the official website of the Grande Shrine of Ise, the most important shrine to Amaterasu. I find it fascinating how objectively they describe the myths – using that very word! – that their faith is based on, and the social context behind those beliefs! Imagine if the Vatican described their own beliefs in such terms!

  650. #650 David
    July 27, 2008

    Dear Professor Myers, I am a Catholic Christian and have been reading your various blog entries regarding your hatred and contempt for my religion and for its beliefs. First, I’d like to say that I respect that you have the right to believe or not to believe as you choose. I am, however, wondering why you are spending so much time and energy writing about something which you obviously do not believe to be true. You have mentioned how this is so unimportant to you. If it is, why spend so much time writing about it and with such hatred in your writing? I have to admit that there are many writings from other religions which I do not believe to be true or sacred. In light of this, I wouldn’t request that my readers or friends send me some of these books so that I could make a point of publicly destroying them. It’s one thing to write articles which try to clearly explain your beliefs and to explain objections to other beliefs. There are ways to do this with kindness and with courtesy, but your posts resort to immature namecalling and insults. I don’t subscribe to atheism and I could attempt to demonstrate why such a belief is false, but I would do so with charity and without hurling insults at you or other atheists. Has the Catholic Church done something to you to deserve such insults and hatred?

  651. #651 Marcus Ranum
    July 27, 2008

    Admit it – Stalin was just as capable rational thought as you.

    Brilliant. And, yes, Stalin vicerally knew game theory, too.

  652. #652 Moses
    July 27, 2008

    #514In the 30′s the JEWS were blamed for all the world’s problems…the root of all evil.

    Today, RELIGION is blamed for all the world’s problems…the root of all evil.

    Bigots neverlearn.

    Posted by: Speer | July 27, 2008 2:08 AM

    What a stupid thing to claim as nobody with even the slightest shred of awareness could make that claim. BTW, honey, your bigot-slip is showing.

    And download a spellchecker. Jesus.

  653. #653 David
    July 27, 2008

    Dear Professor Myers, I am a Catholic Christian and have been reading your various blog entries regarding your hatred and contempt for my religion and for its beliefs. First, I’d like to say that I respect that you have the right to believe or not to believe as you choose. I am, however, wondering why you are spending so much time and energy writing about something which you obviously do not believe to be true. You have mentioned how this is so unimportant to you. If it is, why spend so much time writing about it and with such hatred in your writing? I have to admit that there are many writings from other religions which I do not believe to be true or sacred. In light of this, I wouldn’t request that my readers or friends send me some of these books so that I could make a point of publicly destroying them. It’s one thing to write articles which try to clearly explain your beliefs and to explain objections to other beliefs. There are ways to do this with kindness and with courtesy, but your posts resort to immature namecalling and insults. I don’t subscribe to atheism and I could attempt to demonstrate why such a belief is false, but I would do so with charity and without hurling insults at you or other atheists. Has the Catholic Church done something to you to deserve such insults and hatred?

  654. #654 bpabbott@mac.com
    July 27, 2008

    Absolutely terrible! Is nothing sacred?

    Sacred Cows Make the Best Burgers! ;-)

  655. #655 Mike
    July 27, 2008

    At #82 “My roommates and I prank called poor Jason. He’s a dumb instinctive dude, but one of us did a chat with him and he’s a bit remorseful and feels kinda stupid for what he did.

    I’m pissed at my roommate for letting him know his phone number had been posted – I was gonna call as a collections agent.

    Posted by: Andrew | July 26, 2008 4:47 PM ”

    The link to Andrew’s page is reported as an attack site by FireFox.

  656. #656 SC
    July 27, 2008

    It’s one thing to write articles which try to clearly explain your beliefs and to explain objections to other beliefs.

    Of course – this is precisely what the Catholic Church has limited itself to for the past several centuries. You would never dream of shaping laws to promote or enforce your beliefs about sexuality, reproduction, marriage, child-rearing, education,…, or, like, becoming the official state religion. You’re the Sara Lee Baked-Goods Appreciation Society!

    I don’t subscribe to atheism and I could attempt to demonstrate why such a belief is false, but I would do so with charity and without hurling insults at you or other atheists.

    Go for it, David! It’s too early for a drinking game, but I’m dying to test my speed at locating your arguments in the list JeffreyD linked to @ #336.

  657. #657 SEF
    July 27, 2008

    Imagine if the Vatican described their own beliefs in such terms!

    As I was explaining / hypothesising earlier, I doubt that they could ever do so.

    The key thing about Amaterasu is that she’s a nice god who bestows her goodness indiscriminately and without badness. So no believers feel at all pressured to make other people believe in her lest she stop bestowing goodness onto themselves and neither in her continuing lack of existence do they feel pressured to do any bad stuff on her behalf. The people who believe in nasty, violent, vengeful gods (such as the Jewish-Christian-Muslim versions) are stuck with having to proselytise, persecute and retaliate against other people out of fear combined with inevitable recognition that their god isn’t around doing those things itself despite their religion’s claims.

    One sees the same pathological behaviour among groups of bullies – whether at school or in the military or similar enforcers within evil regimes. The followers are nasty to those they believe the bosses would want attacked, lest they incur the wrath of the boss themselves on his return. The boss doesn’t have to be a real person for this mentality to apply. They’re still going to behave as fearful and abused abusers.

  658. #658 Moses
    July 27, 2008

    Baby the Wonder Troll Writes:

    Ever heard of the PRC? Atheist wonderland where all your dreams of religious intolerance can come true!

    Posted by: Baba | July 27, 2008 5:14 AM

    Just for others on this board, because I couldn’t give a shit less about Baba, but his short, whiny post is about as inept as it comes as a put-down.

    Baba doesn’t know that religion is, and foreign missionaries are, tolerated there. Heck, my neighbor’s ex-husband ran-away to China to be a missionary, leaving her with three kids and a single-parent income because “God called him.”

    Man, she’s bitter.

    Anyway, back to his EPIC FAIL of a point, there are about 600 million Buddhists in China. About 400 million Taoists. But these populations massively over-lap because most are both as the doctrines are NOT incompatible.

    There are about 50 million Christians. There are 20 million Muslims. Heck, even the Hindus are represented and they just built their first temple in Foshan. And there are Jews there, too.

    So, for those who think China is religiously intolerant, I’d suggest getting out of your mother’s basement more often and finding out how the world really works. And not from your current propaganda sources which are, if you believe this idiocy, ignorant or liars or both.

    BTW, China is still predominantly atheist with 59% of the population being non-religious/atheist. And, oddly, it has a lower poverty rate (8%) than the United States which runs between 12% and 16% at anyone time.

    Kind of a fucked-up indictment of this “Christian Nation” isn’t it? We’re like 12th to 20th at anyone time. Yet, as a first-world nation WE ARE BY AND FAR THE MOST CHRISTIAN.

    Yet we suck at the very ministry of Jesus – taking care of the poor, downtrodden and despised. What a plague this religion has become on our race.

  659. #659 Dan
    July 27, 2008

    I don’t really understand the mentality behind this act. It seems to have a been motivated by a spirit of meanness, mockery and contempt that doesn’t seem worthy of a scientist and educator.

    I am planning on a day of prayer and fasting on August 6th, in reparation for this act. I ask fellow Catholics to join me..

    Peace+

  660. #660 Ben Abbott
    July 27, 2008

    Has the Catholic Church done something to you to deserve such insults and hatred?

    We all have a vested interest in seeing that immoral behavior is suppressed. The response of many Catholics to the actions regarding the cracker are an example (imo) of a behavior that should be suppressed. The immoral actions of the student are a pittance in comparison to the response of many Catholics.

    In any event, pointing out that it is only a cracker is not congruent with insults and hatred. To get an idea of what does constituted insult and hatred, read any one of the emails PZ posted.

  661. #661 Neural T
    July 27, 2008

    David #655

    I am a Catholic Christian and have been reading your various blog entries regarding your hatred and contempt for my religion and for its beliefs…. I am, however, wondering why you are spending so much time and energy writing about something which you obviously do not believe to be true. You have mentioned how this is so unimportant to you. If it is, why spend so much time writing about it and with such hatred in your writing?

    You obviously haven’t been reading the comments that much, because this question has been answered numerous times. The threat of a desecration started out more or less as an off-the-cuff comment. It was facetious and rhetorical in nature. It only became serious when PZ saw the “mass lunacy” that his “threat” created. At that point he decided that he couldn’t just let it drop.

    The brainwashing of superstitious people needs to be challenged.

    Has the Catholic Church done something to you to deserve such insults and hatred?

    Not the Catholic Church per se. It has been eerily silent on the whole issue. But PZ has received dozens of death threats and over 12,000 emails, many of them hateful, and has witnessed an organized campaign, led by Bill Donohue and the Catholic League, to discredit him and get him fired from his job. And that was all before the desecration took place.

    All that said, I have yet to see him attack Catholics themselves. He continues to criticize their beliefs and their reasoning abilities.

  662. #662 alex
    July 27, 2008

    Dan:

    I don’t really understand the mentality behind this act. It seems to have a been motivated by a spirit of meanness, mockery and contempt that doesn’t seem worthy of a scientist and educator.

    you’re right, you don’t understand the mentality of it. read the original blog posts in order for a more full comprehension of why all this happened.

    I am planning on a day of prayer and fasting on August 6th, in reparation for this act. I ask fellow Catholics to join me.

    wrong place to ask.

  663. #663 JoJo
    July 27, 2008

    I am planning on a day of prayer and fasting on August 6th, in reparation for this act. I ask fellow Catholics to join me.

    It appears that Dan never got the memo. The entire month of August has been dedicated to prayers, masses, abstinence, etc. to get PZ to convert to Catholicism.

  664. #664 NanuNanu
    July 27, 2008

    Comment by Baba blocked. [unkill]?[show comment]

    oh god sweet peace at last.

  665. #665 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    But PZ has received dozens of death threats and over 12,000 emails, many of them hateful, and has witnessed an organized campaign, led by Bill Donohue and the Catholic League, to discredit him and get him fired from his job. And that was all before the desecration took place.

    You guys believe everything you’re told? The examples that pasted were far from hateful. Stop trying to act persecuted.

    And, oddly, it has a lower poverty rate (8%) than the United States which runs between 12% and 16% at anyone time.

    You must be a moron. 17% of China’s population lives on less than $1/day.

  666. #666 Sandi
    July 27, 2008

    You’re dishonestly splitting hairs if you think Myers wanted only to disparage Catholic beliefs and not Catholic believers (i.e., Catholic people). If so, he would have written a scholarly, polite little discourse on how Catholic AND OTHER Christian beliefs are not logical. He didn’t do that. Instead, with great adolescent glee, he bent over backwards to insult Catholic people. As the kindly and mature professor said, “I’ll show you sacrilege, gladly, and with much fanfare. I won’t be tempted to hold it hostage (no, not even if I have a choice between returning the Eucharist and watching Bill Donohue kick the pope in the balls, which would apparently be a more humane act than desecrating a goddamned cracker.” If you’ve read Myers’ rants and diatribes on this website, he’s insulted Catholic people over and over again–not just their beliefs in some scholarly, polite, dispassionate way, but Catholic people. It was his intention to offend Catholics and cause great pain, and if you think he was just challenging us all to critique Catholic beliefs, then you’re either hopelessly naive or just plain stupid. Hence, my analogy to Judaism previously was precisely on point. I’ll reprint it here: “Black Wolf (#245). You’re absolutely right, so let’s start attacking Jewish beliefs. Have somebody steal a Jewish Torah and hand it to Myers. Myers can then rip the Torah and place it in a trash bin with a side of ham… Then, post the photo on the website. No bigotry there, right pal? Let’s go for it! I can hardly await your response. Let me guess…Catholics aren’t the same as Jews. It’s not bigotry to bash Catholics, but it is to bash Jews. No logic.

  667. #667 Sandi
    July 27, 2008

    Oh, and for anyone who calls me a bigot and says I actually want to bash Jews, let me acquint you with the word “analogy.” I’m taking another religious group and substituting it for Catholics to illustrate a point. Duh.

  668. #668 Paper Hand
    July 27, 2008

    Sandi @ 668:

    NO ONE IS STEALING ANYTHING! Where did this “stealing” idea come from? Taking a cheap mass-produced piece of bread given to you by a priest and just leaving with it instead of eating it is NOT the same as breaking into a synagogue and stealing an expensive torah scroll. The first is a breach of etiquette, the second is breaking and entering, and theft. Not to mention, the congregants of said synagogue would have legitimate reason to fear for their safety if such an event took place, as such behavior is often associated with violent anti-Semetic groups.

  669. #669 CortxVortx
    July 27, 2008

    Baba is our anti-truth-machine. Same style of a flurry of meaningless one-liners that amount to “nuh-uh!” with a snotty demeanor, except from the “loving” Christian end of the spectrum.

    ‘course, Baba Loonie can’t defend any of his assertions.

  670. #670 Paper Hand
    July 27, 2008

    Sandi @ 669:

    I don’t think anyone here would’ve accused you of being an anti-semite for that reason. We’re smart enough to understand the concept of analogy. We just think that your analogy is worthless. Torahs are not cheap mass-produced items given away at synagogue services

  671. #671 Sandi
    July 27, 2008

    Paperhand at 668: You’re just pulling my leg, right? I mean, you don’t actually believe what you wrote, right? Myers asked someone to steal him a Eucharistic wafer. If you’re not a Catholic, and if you don’t intend to consume the wafer immediately, but, rather, you intend to mail it to Myers so he can desecrate it, then it’s stealing. Breaking and entering isn’t necessary–we’re not talking about sending anyone to jail. It’s not bread to us, pal. It’s the body of Christ, and that’s more valuable to us then a Torah would be to a Jew, as they don’t consider the Torah to be God. And I didn’t say anything about breaking into a synagogue. Like Myers, we could call on someone to abscond with one. Anyway, it was just an analogy, which of course is lost on a blockhead like you.

  672. #672 BK
    July 27, 2008

    What I’m finding interesting is that all this outrage over the Eucharist really seems to me to show idolatry. You’re not supposed to be worshiping the physical things representing a religion or figure. All the texts say to worship God….not the statues, not the building you pray in, and certainly not the Eucharist.

    From the phrase, “Give unto Caesar what is Caesar’s and give unto God what is God’s” one is supposed to learn what is actually God’s is a person’s soul and mind. Physical things belong to the physical world.

    The people who are either worshiping the Eucharist and/or sending threats are the ones going to hell.

    —-Ex-Catholic

  673. #673 Emmet Caulfield
    July 27, 2008

    It’s not bigotry to bash Catholics, but it is to bash Jews.

    Au contraire, Jews are an ethnic group, not simply a religion. It is bigotry to bash Jewish ethnicity, Mexicans, blacks, or women because they can’t control their ethnicity, nationality, skin-colour, or gender. It is not bigotry to bash Catholics or Jewish religious beliefs, because those are ideas freely chosen by the individuals who choose them. Indeed, the Torah is regularly bashed here when the Exodus is held up to ridicule as the fiction that it is, and Yahweh is ridiculed as the petty, evil, genocidal, misogynist, maniac fucktard god that he is.

    If you don’t like having your beliefs ridiculed, you should avoid believing ridiculous things.

  674. #674 Rick R
    July 27, 2008

    Sandi vomited- “It was his intention to offend Catholics and cause great pain, and if you think he was just challenging us all to critique Catholic beliefs, then you’re either hopelessly naive or just plain stupid.”

    Epic wrong. He was exercising his free speech rights. If you’re insulted, too bad. The goal wasn’t to make you “feel bad”, it was to show EVERYONE ELSE that the reaction by the “good gentle catholics” at UCF campus ministries and the catholic league was extreme and unwarranted. It makes you look bad.

    And that’s really what’s bothering you. Tough.

  675. #675 jagannath
    July 27, 2008

    Try two.

    Sandi, Lily, FrJ, Baba or some other catholic apologist as the main players seem to avoid the issue

    Is catholic church innocent of wrong doings?

  676. #676 JeffreyD
    July 27, 2008

    SC at #658, who said it is too early for a drinking game? It is after 5…somewhere.

    Ciao

  677. #677 Maria
    July 27, 2008

    You’re dishonestly splitting hairs if you think Myers wanted only to disparage Catholic beliefs and not Catholic believers (i.e., Catholic people). If so, he would have written a scholarly, polite little discourse on how Catholic AND OTHER Christian beliefs are not logical.

    He does that every other day. In THIS case, though, Catholics were threatening to have two students expelled from their University over a wafer. These students are still at risk of being expelled, as a matter of fact. So why take on other Christians, at this particular time?

    In general, PZ goes against all sorts of religious belief. Even this time, the wafer is nailed to a Quran, isn’t it?

    Also, I don’t understand why you would feel vindicated if yet another religion were debased. Shouldn’t you be turning the other cheek, instead of pointing at someone else to receive the treatment you have? That’s what
    I remember from my Catholic upbringing, but I may be wrong.

  678. #678 DaveL
    July 27, 2008

    It’s not bread to us, pal. It’s the body of Christ

    How do you choose what something is? We can certainly differ on what a thing represents, since all symbols are ultimately arbitrary, but we don’t all get to choose the physical reality of things.

    You wouldn’t accept this Neo-Platonic nonsense about anything else in life. You wouldn’t, for instance, accept being paid for your work with a handful of beans, no matter how much your employer insisted they had the true substance of U.S. hundred-dollar bills. Why the double standard?

    Now, don’t beg off answering the question by claiming I don’t understand the Doctrine of Transubstantiation or the Nature of the Eucharist. I was Catholic once. I understand it. It’s just nonsense, that’s all.

  679. #679 Nerd of Redhead
    July 27, 2008

    Sandi, take a deep breath and calm down a little. First, quit asking for special considerations. By that, I mean that because you are upset, we have to do something about your upset. That won’t happen, even in a polite society, because there are certain upsets you just have to learn to deal with as part of growing up. This is one of them. We do not have to give special consideration to the Catholic church and its members no matter how much they are upset. Second, quit saying that PZ just makes fun of Catholics. He makes fun of all religions. Failure to acknowledge this makes you a liar and bullshitter. Third, some Catholics have written stupid thing to PZ and threatened him. You have two choices here. Either condemn those threats as unchristian, or agree with them. Fourth, what is your real reason for you continuing to post here? I don’t think you know why you do. But before you can explain it to us, you have to explain it to yourself.

  680. #680 John Robie
    July 27, 2008

    So…if they’re going to pray for PZ and he’s going to hell, doesn’t that mean they know prayers are ineffective?

  681. #681 SC
    July 27, 2008

    Anyway, it was just an analogy, which of course is lost on a blockhead like you.

    http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2008/07/fresh_thread.php#comment-1011559

  682. #682 Rick R
    July 27, 2008

    #682- Nah. They’re praying for him to GO to hell.

  683. #683 John
    July 27, 2008

    Sandi Said

    Myers asked someone to steal him a Eucharistic wafer.

    Now if you went back to the post in question

    PZ said

    anyone out there score me some consecrated communion wafers?

    Here is a hint Sandi, score doesn’t equal steal. The cracker is given away to those who walk to the rail, there is not theft involved. In the other examples you throw out, the item in question is not something that is given away. So now a question for you. Are you just not real smart, or are you lying for Jesus again?

  684. #684 Paper Hand
    July 27, 2008

    Sand @ 673:

    I understand analogy. I just think your analogy is stupid. If someone wanted to buy a torah, and then desecrate it, that would be their own business. I think it’d be stupid to waste the money, but that’s all. Or if some rabbi chose to give a torah away (I seriously doubt any rabbi *would*, of course), then the person who received it could desecrate it if they wished, and I would never accuse them of theft.

    The host is JUST a piece of bread. Just because you’re under the delusion that it’s human flesh that happens to look and taste like bread doesn’t mean that it really is.

  685. #685 Owlmirror
    July 27, 2008

    This is in response to the assertion above that religious liberty in the U.S. Constitution is somehow the result of Judeo-Christian philosophy (so, all of those religious wars… didn’t happen? Weren’t properly philosophical?).

    A while back, when I was researching early Colonial American attitudes towards religion and religious freedom, I found an interesting source: The Massachusetts Body of Liberties. Which does indeed prescribe certain rights and liberties to all.

    But it has an… interesting section under “Capital Laws”:

    1. If any man after legal conviction shall have or worship any other god, but the lord god, he shall be put to death.
    2. If any man or woman be a witch, (that is hath consulteth with a familiar spirit,) they shall be put to death.
    3. If any person shall Blaspheme the name of god, the father, Son or Holy Ghost, with direct, express, presumptuous or high handed blasphemy, or shall curse god in the like manner, he shall be put to death.

    And that’s before the laws that declare murder to be a capital crime. The original also has footnotes that cite the relevant biblical verses that the laws derive from.

    Yeah, that’s real supportive of religious liberty, there…

  686. #686 SEF
    July 27, 2008

    it’s stealing … It’s the body of Christ

    Then, by definition (yours anyway!), it (a) can’t be stealing and (b) means you’re a cannibal with a side-order of necrophilia.

    You, Sandi, are dishonest or an ill-educated idiot or, very probably, both.

  687. #687 extatyzoma
    July 27, 2008

    jason larrymore, well hes rather scary isnt he.

    as a mechanic hes going to be hairy and oily, as a catholic hes also going to avoid using a condom to desecrate an unwilling ass.

    oh dear: oily mechanic pummeling ass bareback.

    and jason isnt actually homosexual?? he needs to be careful as he just might be getting a lot of phonecalls that he didnt want!

  688. #688 Michael X
    July 27, 2008

    Everyone, really. Does anyone here think that by this point Sandi is going to suddenly become amenable to reason? Will Baba ever post a complete thought?

    We waste our energies and eat up bandwidth dealing with those who have proven themselves impervious to coherent thought. If either of these people showed the capacity to mend their arguments in accordance with new information then I’d praise us all for the good conversation. But, really, there is no evidence of its existence before, and no evidence that it is going to appear in the future.

    Sandi is a troll. Not as asinine as Baba, as she actually seems to believe the nonsense she spouts, but a troll nonetheless. Let them both die from lack of attention. There are real issues being dealt with on this blog. Like Sagan’s video on nuclear weapons for example.

    So many sharp intellects would be better spent there.

    (how the fuck did I get on this soap box? Where the hell do these things come from? Sneaky little bastards…)

  689. #689 Paper Hand
    July 27, 2008

    Michael @ 690:

    You’re right. I shouldn’t be wasting my time with Sandi. SIWOTI syndrome again …

  690. #690 SEF
    July 27, 2008

    My soap comes in packets. I don’t recall seeing it in boxes – unless you count the old plastic ice-cream tub in which I store it after purchase. I can’t quite see that being of much use in oration though. Or is walloping someone over the head a legitimate rhetorical tactic in those situations?

  691. #691 Maria
    July 27, 2008

    One more thing: As others above, I seriously doubt the number given by the ass-desecrating Christian is his own.

  692. #692 Janice
    July 27, 2008

    Just found your blog and love it. I am sorry the nutters are coming out of the woodwork for your piercing of a frigging cracker and some paper with a nail. I have been an athiest all my life – THANK YOU MOM!!! for giving me the best advice every – question everything….

    I will be visiting again so thanks you have a brilliant mind for sure….even more scare is the thought of muslims wanting to take over the world and make everyone convert…scary scary scary.

  693. #693 Nerd of Redhead
    July 27, 2008

    Welcome Janice. Feel free to jump in any time. Sometimes the best fun is to sit back with popcorn and your favorite libation and watch the action.

  694. #694 Phoenix Woman
    July 27, 2008

    When dealing with Sandi, keep this post handy:

    http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2008/07/i_get_email_20.php#comment-1013928

    As for me, I’ve shoved her into the killfile, where she and Baba can commune.

  695. #695 El Herring
    July 27, 2008

    I’m all out of popcorn. Care to throw some over here?

    Welcome Janice. I wouldn’t worry too much about the muslims, they don’t seem to be too bothered about this latest kerfuffle (I like that word!)

  696. #696 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    If you don’t like having your beliefs ridiculed, you should avoid believing ridiculous things.

    I know. When are these people going to get it that Stalin killed in the name of atheism?

  697. #697 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    As for me, I’ve shoved her into the killfile, where she and Baba can commune.

    We’re not actually in your computer.

  698. #698 Nerd of Redhead
    July 27, 2008

    I know. When are these people going to get it that Stalin killed in the name of atheism?

    The day after you acknowledge he killed in the name of power.

  699. #699 BeeNY
    July 27, 2008

    Baba do you work for Fox News?

    You seem to believe, as they do, that if you repeat a falsehood enough times it suddenly becomes true.

    Are you Baba O’reilly?

  700. #700 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    The day after you acknowledge he killed in the name of power.

    No, you first!

  701. #701 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Are you Baba O’reilly?

    Never heard of him.

  702. #702 Mooser
    July 27, 2008

    This morning, when I poured milk in my coffee, it assumed the shape of Mary and the Baby Jesus. But it was just clouds in my coffee, clouds in my coffee and YOU’RE SO VAIN!!!!!!

    You probably think this comment’s about you!

  703. #703 Owlmirror
    July 27, 2008

    Speaking of desecrating the torah, I recently stumbled across the profession of “faith” that Jews had to make when converting to Christianity, post-Constantine. At some point, Jewish Christianity became an oxymoron — you were either one, or the other, and you could not be both, and this separation was enforced:

    ‘I renounce all customs, rites, legalisms, unleavened breads and
    sacrifices of lambs of the Hebrews, sacrifices, prayers, aspersions,
    purifications, sanctifications and propitiations, and fasts, and new
    moons, and Sabbaths, and superstitions, and hymns and chants and
    observances and synagogues, and the food and drink of the Hebrews;
    in one word, I renounce absolutely everything Jewish, every law, rite
    and custom…. and if afterwards I shall wish to deny and return to
    Jewish superstition, or shall be found eating with Jews, or feasting
    with them, or secretly conversing and condemning the Christian
    religion instead of openly confuting them and condemning their vain
    faith, then let the trembling of Cain and the leprosy of Gehazi cleave to
    me, as well as the legal punishments to which I acknowledge myself
    liable. And may I be anathema (cursed) in the world to come, and may
    my soul be set down with Satan and the devils.

    “Profession of Faith, from the Church of Constantinople: From
    Assemani, Cod. Lit., I, p.105″ as cited in James Parkes, The Conflict of
    the Church and the Synagogue (New York: Atheneum, 1974, pp. 397-
    398

    And when searching for the above, I found a whole page of similar professions and statements:

    http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/jewish-oaths.html

    And I was reminded, on seeing the edge.org article about disgust cited @#420, of this particular phrase in one of the oaths: “I promise that I will never return to the vomit of Jewish superstition” and “With absolute sincerity, as I have said in my profession, I have abjured all Jewish rites and observances, and with my whole heart shall believe in the Holy Trinity, never returning in any way to the vomit of my former error, or associating with the wicked Jews.

    The separation of Judaism and Christianity was enforced by associating beliefs and practices with something literally disgusting. This is how anti-Judaism was absorbed into Christianity and reinforced by the numerically dominant Christians. And this is almost certainly what eventually lead to the massacres of Jews, including that of Berlitz in 1243 for the alleged crime of desecrating the host, and the blood libels, and the pogroms, and eventually, the Holocaust.

    The roots of all religious beliefs are in the awe and wonder of the sacred, yet the sacred is indistinguishable from superstition and primitive taboo. And the disgust and outrage at the violation of that which is taboo; of that which is sacred, can lead to violent outrage, and even the willingness to kill and die for the sake of the sacred.

  704. #704 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    This morning, when I poured milk in my coffee, it assumed the shape of Mary and the Baby Jesus.

    They told you their names??!!

  705. #705 Imback
    July 27, 2008

    701:

    Baba do you work for Fox News?
    You seem to believe, as they do, that if you repeat a falsehood enough times it suddenly becomes true.
    Are you Baba O’reilly?

    We won’t be fooled again!

  706. #706 Laser Potato
    July 27, 2008

    Baba, stop shifting the burden of proof already.
    *YOU* MADE THE CLAIM, *YOU* HAVE TO PROVIDE EVIDENCE FOR IT.
    And just to make sure…
    *attaches the burden of proof onto Baba’s back with superglue, nails, duct tape and 12 pounds of twine*
    I’m going to bring up #698
    “When are these people going to get it that Stalin killed in the name of atheism?”
    until you can back it up with facts instead of rhetoric.

  707. #707 BeeNY
    July 27, 2008

    Out here in the blogs
    Every post I will clog
    I waste time for a living
    I refuse to fight
    To prove I’m right
    I hope one day I can be forgiven

    -Baba O’reilly

  708. #708 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    *YOU* MADE THE CLAIM, *YOU* HAVE TO PROVIDE EVIDENCE FOR IT.

    Nonsense. Where’s the proof?

  709. #709 jagannath
    July 27, 2008

    Babasense. Where’s the Baba?

  710. #710 Baba
    July 27, 2008


    Out here in the blogs
    Every post I will clog
    I waste time for a living
    I refuse to fight
    To prove I’m right
    I hope one day I can be forgiven

    -Baba O’reilly

    Who?

  711. #711 BeeNY
    July 27, 2008

    Who’s next!

  712. #712 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Babasense. Where’s the Baba?

    I’m speechless!!!

  713. #713 jagannath
    July 27, 2008

    Baba?

  714. #714 JonathanL
    July 27, 2008

    I’m speechless!!!

    I’m babaless!!!

  715. #715 jagannath
    July 27, 2008

    I’m Babaless!!!

  716. #716 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Who’s next!

    Yay!!!!!

  717. #717 Emmet Caulfield
    July 27, 2008

    And the disgust and outrage at the violation of that which is taboo; of that which is sacred, can lead to violent outrage, and even the willingness to kill and die for the sake of the sacred.

    Yup. Judging from the batshit insanity that’s cropped up during Crackergate, I’ve no doubt that if there were lots of towns in the US that were 95%+ Catholic, there would have been riots, looting, arson, and so on in at least one of them, just as we saw in some parts of the Muslim world over the Jyllands Posten cartoons.

    When a person gets deeply emotionally invested in a belief that lacks any basis in reality, no reaction is disproportionate: the emotion invested in the belief doesn’t have to be proportionate to anything real. Sending death threats over a peanut is insane, but if it’s a magic, sacred peanut, then the reaction of the believer is proportionate only to their own emotional commitment to the magicness and sacredness, which may be bizarrely inflated to the point where a peanut is more important than a life in the mind of the true believer.

  718. #718 jagannath
    July 27, 2008

    Babay!!!!!

  719. #719 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    I’m Babaless!!!

    Baba’s best!!

  720. #720 Trin
    July 27, 2008

    I am surprised that people still ask what stops atheists from raping women. My father went to a catholic school on the east coast, however, he was the only atheist there. At one point, a catholic asked him, “what stops you from raping women?” My father was very surprised that someone had to ask him this. This was the late 1960s, not a time without law. The person went on to say that the only thing that kept him from raping women, was the fear of God. My father was rather pleased that something was stopping this man from raping, although belief in a mystical higher power hasn’t stopped other people from doing similar actions.

    I was shocked when my father told me about this incident, and I am shocked even more, that this still goes on. I was one of the few who was raised without religion. I tried various religion, but never catholicism because I had learned enough about them to think that they were nuts. It seems I was right.

    I am now with someone whose family is entirely catholic, so at least one of them thinks we’re going to hell. No question about it. When we actually get married, we are going to have to keep it as close to a religious wedding, so that they realize that we’re human, and not all that different.

    I think what some of the religious people need to realize, is that atheists have been persecuted for a very long time. We have always been seen as different, as if we think we are better than everyone else because we don’t need to redeem ourselves in the eyes of some big cosmic guy. Growing up with that was a bit rough. People didn’t see other religions as bad, as they saw atheists as bad. There have been cases of atheist groups starting on university campuses, and then being shut down because they did not allow people of other faiths to join. However, catholic groups are strong.

    I am not out to sling mud. I think what PZ did was simply to prove a point that a cracker is a cracker. The point has been proven. It is best to move on. And no, don’t go screaming that he is not tolerant of religions, because religions are not tolerant of us. It is a two way street.

  721. #721 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Yup. Judging from the batshit insanity that’s cropped up during Crackergate, I’ve no doubt that if there were lots of towns in the US that were 95%+ Catholic, there would have been riots, looting, arson, and so on in at least one of them, just as we saw in some parts of the Muslim world over the Jyllands Posten cartoons.

    Nostradamus lives!!!

  722. #722 SC
    July 27, 2008

    Cortx Vortx @ #671,

    That comparison is unfair to tm, and appears to contradict itself.

  723. #723 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    I am surprised that people still ask what stops atheists from raping women. My father went to a catholic school on the east coast, however, he was the only atheist there. At one point, a catholic asked him, “what stops you from raping women?” My father was very surprised that someone had to ask him this. This was the late 1960s, not a time without law. The person went on to say that the only thing that kept him from raping women, was the fear of God. My father was rather pleased that something was stopping this man from raping, although belief in a mystical higher power hasn’t stopped other people from doing similar actions.

    I was shocked when my father told me about this incident, and I am shocked even more, that this still goes on. I was one of the few who was raised without religion. I tried various religion, but never catholicism because I had learned enough about them to think that they were nuts. It seems I was right.

    I am now with someone whose family is entirely catholic, so at least one of them thinks we’re going to hell. No question about it. When we actually get married, we are going to have to keep it as close to a religious wedding, so that they realize that we’re human, and not all that different.

    I think what some of the religious people need to realize, is that atheists have been persecuted for a very long time. We have always been seen as different, as if we think we are better than everyone else because we don’t need to redeem ourselves in the eyes of some big cosmic guy. Growing up with that was a bit rough. People didn’t see other religions as bad, as they saw atheists as bad. There have been cases of atheist groups starting on university campuses, and then being shut down because they did not allow people of other faiths to join. However, catholic groups are strong.

    I am not out to sling mud. I think what PZ did was simply to prove a point that a cracker is a cracker. The point has been proven. It is best to move on. And no, don’t go screaming that he is not tolerant of religions, because religions are not tolerant of us. It is a two way street.

    I’m….in…tears..that was beautiful….you should write for the Enquirer.

  724. #724 Raiko
    July 27, 2008

    I was honestly amused by the suggestion that it shows you that you made many ‘good people’ upset, if you get violent hate mail.

    Doesn’t it rather show that you made some really bad, violent, horrible people upset?

    Good people wouldn’t send such mail.

  725. #725 Emmet Caulfield
    July 27, 2008

    Trin #722,

    When Richard Dawkins did his book tour for The God Delusion, he did an interview on a radio call-in show. One of the callers said pretty much the same thing as the Catholic in your father’s story. Dawkins’s “stock answer” is that fear of divine retribution is a piss-poor reason for moral behaviour. The presenter picked up on that and pressed the caller, who ultimately admitted that the only thing that kept him from murdering his neighbour was the belief that he would go to hell for it.

    Sad but true. I’ve heard the show: there’s an MP3 of it online somewhere.

  726. #726 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Cortx Vortx @ #671,

    That comparison is unfair to tm, and appears to contradict itself.

    Posted by: SC | July 27, 2008 4:22 PM

    I always thought that guy was a bullshitter.

  727. #727 jagannath
    July 27, 2008

    I’m….in…Babas..that was Babaful….You should Baba for the Babuirer.

  728. #728 dubiquiabs
    July 27, 2008

    Ever watch a dog visit your back yard? He’ll lift his hind leg and piss a drop or two at every spot where he finds a scent message. I’d say Baba provides the strongest evidence yet for reincarnation.

  729. #729 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    I was honestly amused by the suggestion that it shows you that you made many ‘good people’ upset, if you get violent hate mail.

    The mail wasn’t hateful. That’s a fanciful exaggeration. Please people, get a grip.

  730. #730 jagannath
    July 27, 2008

    The Baba wasn’t Babaful. That’s a Babaful Baberation. Please people, get a Baba.

  731. #731 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Ever watch a dog visit your back yard? He’ll lift his hind leg and piss a drop or two at every spot where he finds a scent message. I’d say Baba provides the strongest evidence yet for reincarnation.

    Don’t try to disguise your fetish for watching dogs pee as scientific enquiry.

  732. #732 BeeNY
    July 27, 2008

    No the email was fair and balanced!

  733. #733 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    Don’t try to disguise your fetish for watching dogs pee as scientific enquiry.

    Posted by: Baba | July 27, 2008 4:43 PM

    Don’t Baba to Baba your Babish for bashing babas baba as babantific babuiry.

  734. #734 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    No the email was fair and balanced!

    No the baba was babair and babalanced!!

  735. #735 Baba
    July 27, 2008

    No the email was fair and balanced!

    Baba agrees!

  736. #736 NanuNanu
    July 27, 2008

    “Baba (goddess) or Bau, a Sumerian goddess depicted with the head of a dog”

    Oh how appropriate.

  737. #737 Lee Picton
    July 27, 2008

    I get to Pharyngula through IE. Is there any way I can get rid of troll posts? Or blow by them, or not see tham on my screen? How did you guys get rid of He-who-will-not-be-named?

  738. #738 MH
    July 27, 2008

    Baba? Baba? I’m sure he’s around here somewhere, I just can’t see him.

  739. #739 Emmet Caulfield
    July 27, 2008

    Lee #739,

    To preserve your own sanity: use Firefox, install the Greasemonkey user scripts extension, then install the ‘killfile’ script. You can then kill the comments from the loons — it greatly increases the S/N ratio.

  740. #740 JoJo
    July 27, 2008

    Morality because of fear of retribution is pretty piss-poor basis for morality. It’s the same as a five year old not stealing cookies from the cookie jar because Mommy will spank him if he does. I can think of much better reasons, even religious reasons, to be moral besides “be a good boy or girl or else the boogyman’ll get ya.”

  741. #741 some guy
    July 27, 2008

    PZ, how often do you read Normal Bob Smith? You guys should organize a hate-mail exchange.

  742. #742 MH
    July 27, 2008

    Lee #739 “I get to Pharyngula through IE. Is there any way I can get rid of troll posts?”

    I don’t think so, Lee, but if you swap over to Firefox, you can also download AdBlockPlus which will get rid of all adverts too.

    Now, where’s Baba? Is she hiding in the same place as Sandie?

  743. #743 Mike
    July 27, 2008

    When I look at PZ’s tummy, I see the Virgin Mary. THE VIRGIN MARY!

    Chew on that, ya crackers.

    This Stikeleather wackaloon should probably be reported. Asking “what if your wife and children” is one thing, but specifically naming them moves beyond rhetoric toward threat.

  744. #744 Lilly de Lure
    July 27, 2008

    Anne Nonymous said:

    I just wanna express my dismay over the way this other “Anne” and her Mere Christianity nonsense are profaning my beloved first name, and also, y’know, totally dissociate myself from all that.

    Hi Anne – we appear to be in the same boat!

  745. #745 Rayven Alandria
    July 27, 2008

    Try two.

    Sandi, Lily, FrJ, Baba or some other catholic apologist as the main players seem to avoid the issue

    Is catholic church innocent of wrong doings?

    Posted by: jagannath |

    Jaga, the trolls will not answer direct questions. They have no answers so they ignore those kinds of questions. I have asked them numerous times to offer proof that Atheists have a creed that somehow connects us to Stalin…crickets chirped. Wowbanger asked about fifty times for one of them to offer opinions on the policy of the catholic church to protect pedophiles and actively thwart law enforcement…crickets chirped. You have asked your direct question many times… crickets chirped.

    The best thing we can do is to refuse to dialog with the defective specimens. They will undoubtedly throw a huge tantrum, but eventually they will go away.

    I’m sure they will create new names and start the game over again in an attempt to get more attention, but perhaps we can shorten the time we waste on their antics by compiling a list of well thought out posts and keep posting that each time a new troll shows up. Something along the lines of “Please read posts so and so”, and refuse further discussion. We have refuted every rediculous argument they’ve raised, time and time again. I for one am tired of repeating myself.

  746. #746 David Wiener
    July 27, 2008

    #666

    I love that your post *is* #666.

    Regards,

    David

  747. #747 PeteK
    July 27, 2008

    That’s the standard of intelligence of your enemies, PZ? You’re a lucky guy…

  748. #748 Phentari
    July 27, 2008

    It needs to be said:

    It was cowardly and reprehensible when anonymous posters posted the Myers family’s personal information. It’s equally cowardly and reprehensible to post the personal information of his detractors.

  749. #749 Sandi
    July 27, 2008

    Sorry I left for a little while, folks. I got tired of trying to have a rational, intellectual debate with you people and decided to debate with the brick wall outside. You know what? The brick wall actually came up with better arguments than you did!! Maybe I’ll convert to the “Church of the Atheist Brick Walls.” I’ve had enough of the illogical loony bin, so you guys can just “talk amongst yourselves” now. Catch you the next time Myers blasphemes God and attacks people of good will.

  750. #750 JeffreyD
    July 27, 2008

    I do so love the blocking software, the Greasemonkey user scripts extension and the ‘killfile’ script. I had been concerned that blocking people would make the thread hard to follow. Oddly enough, blocking Sandi, Baba and a few others makes the thread even easier to follow. I highly recommend this to all.

    Ciao

  751. #751 BaldySlaphead
    July 27, 2008

    “I got tired of trying to have a rational, intellectual debate with you people and decided to debate with the brick wall outside.”

    It would certainly have been more of an evenly-matched discussion.

  752. #752 Laser Potato
    July 27, 2008

    “When are these people going to get it that Stalin killed in the name of atheism?”
    Still waiting for the evidence for that claim, Baba.
    Tum te tum…

  753. #753 Rick R
    July 27, 2008

    Buh-bye Sandi. And fer christ’s sake will ya take “baba” with you?

  754. #754 Lucifer
    July 27, 2008

    Maybe I’ll convert to the “Church of the Atheist Brick Walls.”

    I encourage this course of action. I mean, you’re certainly a brick wall, and you believe far more in yourself than in God.

    Reminds me of someone… I wonder who?

  755. #755 karen
    July 27, 2008

    #739 Lee Picton, unlike some programs, IE and Firefox will happily co-exist on your computer.

  756. #756 Rayven Alandria
    July 27, 2008

    Isn’t is wonderful when you demand trolls answer direct questions before you will engage in further dialog and they then storm off? It’s an effective technique and one we should use more often. Do not respond to their idiotic posts but instead ask a probing and direct question and refuse to talk further until they give an answer.

    Once it’s clear that they are refusing to answer direct questions, they huff and puff, claim YOU are being a brick wall, and they trounce off in a blustery hissy fit. I so love it!

    It’s all about control folks. Once they loose the ability to manipulate you into endless, useless dialog they vanish.

  757. #757 SEF
    July 27, 2008

    @ JoJo #742

    Morality because of fear of retribution is pretty piss-poor basis for morality. It’s the same as a five year old

    That’s because religious people are mentally, educationally, morally and emotionally retarded. The more religious (in that unthinking, by-rote, goddidit, faith-based way of theirs) the more retarded. Religions mis-label mental vices as virtues.

    It’s a reinforcing feedback loop because religion may preferentially attract and select for some of the worst sorts of people anyway and then it makes them worse than they were, by actively encouraging the insanitary mental habits which will keep them religious and make them more easily manipulated by those who are similarly attracted to be in charge of such sheeple. Religious groups form a convenient ready-made gang for a psychopath to have.

  758. #758 Phentari
    July 27, 2008

    Rayven,

    It’s equally amusing when they just as loudly announce that they’re back. It’s rather remniscent of a six-year-old loudly announcing that they’re running away, going around the corner, waiting five minutes, and then returning because nobody came hunting for them.

  759. #759 DingoDave
    July 27, 2008

    Posted by Sandi @ #673:
    “It’s not bread to us, pal. It’s the body of Christ, and that’s more valuable to us then a Torah would be to a Jew, as they don’t consider the Torah to be God.”
    Dear Sandi, I guess you didn’t get the memos. When was the last time you checked your ‘In-Box’?

    From: God
    To: DingoDave
    Cc: Sandi
    Subject: Idols

    -Lev.19
    [4] Do not turn to idols or make for yourselves molten gods: I am the LORD your God.

    -Lev.26
    [1] “You shall make for yourselves no idols and erect no graven image or pillar, and you shall not set up a figured stone in your land, to bow down to them; for I am the LORD your God.
    [30] And I will destroy your high places, and cut down your incense altars, and cast your dead bodies upon the dead bodies of your idols; and my soul will abhor you.

    -Deut.32
    [21] They have stirred me to jealousy with what is no god; they have provoked me with their idols. So I will stir them to jealousy with those who are no people;

    -2Kgs.17
    [12] and they served idols, of which the LORD had said to them, “You shall not do this.”

    -Ps.97
    [7] All worshipers of images are put to shame, who make their boast in worthless idols; all gods bow down before him.

    -Isa.2
    [8] Their land is filled with idols; they bow down to the work of their hands, to what their own fingers have made.

    -Isa.44
    [9] All who make idols are nothing, and the things they delight in do not profit; their witnesses neither see nor know, that they may be put to shame.

    -Isa.57
    [13] When you cry out, let your collection of idols deliver you! The wind will carry them off, a breath will take them away.

    -Jer.10
    [5] Their idols are like scarecrows in a cucumber field, and they cannot speak; they have to be carried, for they cannot walk. Be not afraid of them, for they cannot do evil, neither is it in them to do good.”
    [8] They are both stupid and foolish; the instruction of idols is but wood!
    [14] Every man is stupid and without knowledge; every goldsmith is put to shame by his idols; for his images are false, and there is no breath in them.

    Jer.16
    [18] And I will doubly recompense their iniquity and their sin, because they have polluted my land with the carcasses of their detestable idols, and have filled my inheritance with their abominations.”

    -Ezek.6
    [4] Your altars shall become desolate, and your incense altars shall be broken; and I will cast down your slain before your idols.
    [5] And I will lay the dead bodies of the people of Israel before their idols; and I will scatter your bones round about your altars.
    [6] Wherever you dwell your cities shall be waste and your high places ruined, so that your altars will be waste and ruined, your idols broken and destroyed, your incense altars cut down, and your works wiped out.

    -Ezek.14
    [3] “Son of man, these men have taken their idols into their hearts, and set the stumbling block of their iniquity before their faces; should I let myself be inquired of at all by them?
    [6] “Therefore say to the house of Israel, Thus says the Lord GOD: Repent and turn away from your idols; and turn away your faces from all your abominations.

    -Ezek.22
    [4] You have become guilty by the blood which you have shed, and defiled by the idols which you have made; and you have brought your day near, the appointed time of your years has come. Therefore I have made you a reproach to the nations, and a mocking to all the countries.

    -Ezek.33
    [25] Therefore say to them, Thus says the Lord GOD: You eat flesh with the blood, and lift up your eyes to your idols, and shed blood; shall you then possess the land?

    -Ezek.36
    [25] I will sprinkle clean water upon you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleannesses, and from all your idols I will cleanse you.

    -Hos.11
    [2] The more I called them, the more they went from me; they kept sacrificing to the Ba’als (Lords), and burning incense to idols.

    -Jonah.2
    [8] Those who pay regard to vain idols forsake their true loyalty.

    -Mic.1
    [7] All her images shall be beaten to pieces, all her hires shall be burned with fire, and all her idols I will lay waste; for from the hire of a harlot she gathered them, and to the hire of a harlot they shall return.

    -Hab.2
    [18] What profit is an idol when its maker has shaped it, a metal image, a teacher of lies? For the workman trusts in his own creation when he makes dumb idols!

    -Zech.13
    [2] “And on that day, says the LORD of hosts, I will cut off the names of the idols from the land, so that they shall be remembered no more; and also I will remove from the land the

    prophets and the unclean spirit.

    -1Cor.10
    [14] Therefore, my beloved, shun the worship of idols.

    -1John.5
    [21] Little children, keep yourselves from idols.

    This message and any attachments may be confidential. If you are not the intended recipient of this message would you please delete the message and any attachments and advise the sender.
    This message may contain privileged and confidential information intended only for the use of the addressees named above. If you are not the intended recipient of this message, you are hereby notified that any use, dissemination, distribution, or reproduction of this message is prohibited. If you have received this message in error, please notify me immediately.
    Any views expressed in this message are those of God except where the sender expressly and with authority states them to be the views of men .

  760. #760 Marcus Ranum
    July 27, 2008

    I am planning on a day of prayer and fasting on August 6th, in reparation for this act.

    I’ll offset your day of prayer and fasting with a day of BBQ, beer, and fornication. Have a good one! I sure will.

  761. #761 jorge666
    July 27, 2008

    Dr. Myers Beware – Another Psychotic Christian Strikes Again! This time they are trying to kill their young rather than molest them.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/25872864/

    updated 1 hour, 32 minutes ago
    KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – A man wielding a shotgun entered a church and opened fire as congregants watched a youth performance Sunday, killing one person and injuring eight others, Knoxville Police Chief Sterling Owen said.

    Police said the gunman was taken into custody. They didn’t immediately release his name. No children were injured. A hospital spokeswoman said five of the wounded were in critical condition.

    Owen said the man killed was Greg McKendry, 60, a longtime church member and usher…

    Sick bastards –

    On another note: It is just a fracking cracker, morons.

  762. #762 Rayven Alandria
    July 27, 2008

    Buh-bye Sandi. And fer christ’s sake will ya take “baba” with you?

    Posted by: Rick R | July 27, 2008 6:05 PM

    This may turn out to be a rather funny comment. I am wondering, although I haven’t fully investigated, if Sandi and Baba might be one in the same. Do their posts overlap, or do they tend to post a bunch of posts, then disappear and the other one pops up posting a bunch of posts? I did notice that they sometimes vanish for long periods of time at the same time. (I didn’t word that well, but you know what I mean.)

    Since Sandi huffed off I haven’t seen a post by Baba either. Kind of odd. Perhaps they both had to go some place at the same time. It may be coincidence though, and they both left just to go to evening church.

    Rayven,

    It’s equally amusing when they just as loudly announce that they’re back. It’s rather remniscent of a six-year-old loudly announcing that they’re running away, going around the corner, waiting five minutes, and then returning because nobody came hunting for them.

    Yes, I noticed that as well. It’s another reason I began to wonder if she’s Baba. It’s as though she feels a need to explain why she was absent to throw us off the trail. It may be as you mentioned though, a “Look at me, look at me, I’m back” thingy.

    The trolls are always so similar though, that even if they aren’t the same person, they might as well be.

  763. #763 LisaJ
    July 27, 2008

    ‘Church of the Atheist Brick Walls’…. thanks Sandi! I’ve been trying to think of a fitting name for my atheist church I’m building out back, and your’s is just perfect!

    Rayven at #764, I think you may just have something there about Sandi and Baba being the same person.

  764. #764 Stalin
    July 27, 2008

    When are these people going to get it that Stalin killed in the name of atheism?

    I kill in the name of whatever is convenient and offer no proof or justification.

    What about you?

  765. #765 JoJo
    July 27, 2008

    There seems to be a few posters who aren’t just feeding the trolls, they’re taking the trolls out for a three course meal followed by brandy, coffees, cigars and then inviting them back to their place for an evening of mutual masturbation.

  766. #766 Blind Squirrel FCD
    July 27, 2008

    also in the news: It happens that a car door, a 10 year old girl, a bible, a Sunday school book and a watermelon, in that order will stop a stray bullet. Who do you suppose is getting the credit? If you answered the car door or the girl, you don’t know xians.
    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/25710198/

  767. #767 SEF
    July 27, 2008

    Being in the same time-zone could account for a lot of that sort of thing though. I’ve noticed certain non-trolls also appear and disappear at about the same time as each other. Yet there’s no good reason to suppose various of those are really the same person.

  768. #768 Wowbagger
    July 27, 2008

    Sandi,

    since you seem incapable of comprehending sophisticated explanations for what bigotry is, and why attacking catholic beliefs is different from attacking people, I’ll simplify it for you.

    There are such things as ex-catholics, aren’t there? Of course there are – many. Now, what you need to do is show me an ex-ethnic-Jew. Or an ex-African-American (Michael Jackson still identifies, BTW, so you can’t claim him). Or an ex-Latino.

    What’s that? You can’t? Why’s that? Is that because ethnicity isn’t a choice? It’s not based on beliefs one chooses to hold?

    Do you get it now?

    Oh, and as for the ridiculous ‘destroying a Torah’ analogy – remind me: what happens to the cracker when it’s given to you? Is it taken home and put in a safe place, protected and revered?

    No. It’s eaten and destroyed. I’ll write it again: eaten and destroyed. Whether it releases Jebons™ into your bloodstream or not.

    When you can show me that part of any Judaistic religious ceremony involves Torahs being given to people to be destroyed as part of that ceremony, you might have an analogy.

  769. #769 Blind Squirrel FCD
    July 27, 2008

    To be fair, the watermelon is getting partial credit.

  770. #770 jorge666
    July 27, 2008

    #768 Blind Squirrel FCD

    10 year old girls don’t do too well stopping bullets even when they have gone through the car door. The true miracle is that it didn’t kill her outright. The rest of the fluff is just just that.

  771. #771 Blind Squirrel FCD
    July 27, 2008

    jorge666 @772
    No, a true miracle would be if an angel of the lord appeared in full regalia and caught the bullet before it hit the girl, and then vanished in a puff of pleasant smelling purple smoke. Lilac would be nice.

    Otherwise, I would tend to interpret the affair as blind dumb luck.

  772. #772 jagannath
    July 27, 2008

    Did I really expect an answer to the question? I suppose not. It is simple question but answers are not easily forthcoming without a tirade of excuses which one is not allowed to use in defense of any other concept but theirs.

    Then to the oh, so battered and bruised equus that all animal protection groups would hang us if the afore mentioned equus would not be already dead.

    Have atheists killed people, yes. In the name of the atheism? Well, I do not know. I have heard urban legends of such killings but verifiable killings in the name of atheism are just about as rare as people who are able to hold their convictions unchanged from birth to the day of their death.

    Has churches been the cause of death for people? Well, Athanase Seromba organized the killing of 1500 Tutsis in the 1994. In the name of catholic church? Probably not but when a priest, regardless of denomination orchestrates such a massacre, one always wonders why a priest would do it? How he rationaled it and was the promised salvation after some regret in confessional booth one of the reasons allowing such a horrible deed?

  773. #773 Laser Potato
    July 27, 2008

    “No. It’s eaten and destroyed. I’ll write it again: eaten and destroyed.”
    Well, to be more specific, it’s broken down into carbohydrates and monosacchirides.

  774. #774 jorge666
    July 27, 2008

    #773 Blind Squirrel FCD

    Come to think of it, this really should be the “Miracle of the Watermelon”. After all it was the watermelon that stopped the bullet. We should find out which farm the melon came from. From here on all melons coming from that farm should be Holy Watermelons! Maybe we should replace armour plate with this Holy Watermelon. It would be cheaper, but then again it would probably result in just ‘holey watermelon’.

  775. #775 Theresa
    July 27, 2008

    To: Pharangula (PZ) and his acolates who are the freethinkers of godlessness and followers of the deceiving father of lies: Behold I bring you good news.
    The Kingdom of Heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.” Mt.13:45-46
    Freethinkers, recognize that Jesus Christ is the True Pearl of great price. Only He can’t be bought with money, but with a circumcision of the heart.
    Freethinkers, Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Light.
    Jesus is the Pearl of everlasting life and value.
    He suffered, was beaten, spit upon, dragged through the streets, crowned with thorns and nailed to a cross for you and me. Also, too raised to life in a Ressurection that screams through the centuries – Jesus is Alive!
    The father of lies detests this and is using freethinkers like you to further his debauchery. Guess who Won!
    Jesus IS Alive!
    Jesus is the Pearl of great price, offered to
    All Freethinkers (pharangula-type, PZ and acolates),
    who choose as freethinkers to believe by their own accord and given Free Will, (a God given gift to you).
    Chose this day whom you will serve!
    Jesus Christ is your Savior!

    May you find the Truth-that you shall know the Truth and it shall set you free.

  776. #776 jt
    July 27, 2008

    Post more of these! They’re comedy gold.

    If you posted their email addresses, things could really get jiggy.

  777. #777 Sondra
    July 27, 2008

    Dear PZ,

    Over at Andrew Sullivan’s blog, one of his readers defends you;

    »
    Dissent Of The Day

    26 Jul 2008 07:30 pm

    By Patrick Appel

    A reader writes:

    I feel that there is one point about the Myers affair which is not being made clearly and often enough: that is, Myers was not merely attempting to provoke the ire of Catholics. Out of context, what Myers did with the cracker – I am among those who believes that’s all it is – may seem strange, unnecessary, even hateful. Were he simply desecrating a religious symbol for the sake of desecrating a religious symbol, perhaps a case could be reasonably made that he was crossing a line. (Though, and I think you would agree, it would still not be reasonable to attempt to have him fired, to make threats against him, and make threats against his family – all of which Catholics have done in response.)

    However, in context, Myers’ actions are entirely justified, and quite appropriate to the situation.

    Remember, Myers did not simply wake up one day and decide that he wanted to provoke Catholics. Rather, he was reacting in an entirely reasonable way to an absurd situation. Poor Webster Cook, whose crime was nothing greater than failing to ingest his wafer, was put through hell for what he did. He received threats of violence and threats against his life, and he now faces censure, even expulsion from his university. And it is against the backdrop of this mindless bigotry and fanaticism that Myers decided he had to act. He was not acting out of bigotry, but in response to it. His point is one that needed to be made – simply put, that Catholics (and Muslims, and Jews, and Hindus, and any other faction, sect or group) do not have the right to impose their views on the rest of us, particularly those of us who find such views utterly irreconcilable with the facts of the world in which we live, and choose to say so. Had those Catholic fanatics simply left that poor kid alone, I guarantee you that it would never have even occurred to Myers to do what he did. But they didn’t leave him alone; they insisted on demonstrating just how little progress Catholicism has actually made – and Myers was happy to point this out. The simple fact that they tried to tell him he’s not allowed to do what he did is reason enough for him to do it. There’s a say, “Any book worth burning is a book worth reading.” The same principle applies here: any speech that is banned is speech that must be said, and any expression (provided it’s non-violent) not permitted is an expression which must be made – simply to make the point that this is a free society, and such restrictions cannot be allowed to stand.

    That bears repeating: this is not the middle east; this is not the middle ages. This is a free society. And in a free society, there exists no right to not be offended. If the Catholic church can get away with desecrating what others consider sacred (or, for those of us who have no concept of sacredness, at least special) – if they can call a loving union between two gay men or women an “abomination”, if they can call the union into which I hope to enter someday a “perversion”, then damn it, I reserve the right to desecrate what they consider sacred also. Respect is a two-way street – if they want my respect, they must give me theirs. If they want Myers to respect them, they must also respect him (and Mr. Cook for that matter). But this is something of which religion in general seems incapable – they always want respect, but reserve the right to give none in return.

    Permalink :: Trackback (0) :: Sphere It!

  778. #778 SEF
    July 27, 2008

    @ Theresa #777

    he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.

    And then the silly man starved because all he had was an utterly useless bauble of symbolic value over which he inappropriately gloated, forsaking all things of true merit. While the conman who had sold him the false idol lived smugly ever after in the lap of luxury, breeding and raising more of his own dishonest kind.

  779. #779 Wowbagger
    July 27, 2008

    jagannath,

    I don’t think any amount of evidence is going to convince believers that Stalin (or Mao or whoever), despite being an atheist, didn’t do what he did to further the interests of atheism. It’s too complicated.

    Similarly, I don’t think we get much value from pointing out the number of quotes, photos and ‘Gott Mitt Uns’ badges we produce to show that Hitler certainly exhibited, at least some of the time, a leaning to christianity. The only help that is to us is that being christian is no barrier to moral failings – which the christians admit anyway, despite it undermining the argument about the benefits of believing.

    Neither of them are around to be asked what they ‘really believed’ – and even if they had been asked, I wouldn’t trust what either of them said; they were both, on their best days, paranoid and delusional.

    What I want to ask the believers when this comes up is ‘how does the fact that both Hitler and Stalin (religious or atheist notwithstanding) were able to do what they did, help you to believe there’s a kind, loving and all-powerful being who will help you in times of need?’

    It’s the same with paedophile priests. For me, it’s not so much about the church covering it up; it’s about the ridiculous notion that an all-powerful, omniscient, benevolent deity would let those who were charged with ‘tending to his flock’ commit those unforgiveable acts.

  780. #780 Steve_C
    July 27, 2008

    Oh I love the GreaseMonkey add on. Sandi and Baba… gone!

  781. #781 Jesus, called Christ
    July 27, 2008

    Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Light.

    No, I’m not.

    Jesus is the Pearl of everlasting life and value.

    No, I’m not.

    He suffered, was beaten, spit upon, dragged through the streets, crowned with thorns and nailed to a cross

    Ow. Do you have to remind me?

    for you and me.

    Believe me, it wasn’t for you, or for anyone else alive today.

    Also, too raised to life in a Ressurection

    No, I wasn’t.

    PS: If I had been, it would be spelled “Resurrection”.

    that screams through the centuries – Jesus is Alive!

    No, it doesn’t, because I’m not.

    The father of lies detests this

    No, he finds the whole business amusing. Because it’s not true, and people fought wars and committed massacres over it.

    Jesus IS Alive!

    No, I’m not.

    Jesus Christ is your Savior!

    No, I most certainly, absolutely, am not.

    May you find the Truth-that you shall know the Truth and it shall set you free.

    And in all sincerity, I wish the same for you.

  782. #782 waldteufel
    July 27, 2008

    Hey, Theresa, I know you godbots love scripture, so here’s one for you: Malachi 2:3.

    See if you can read that with a straight face.

    Since your Wholly Babble (Levicticus 11:19, 11, 12) says that eating shellfish is an abomination, I guess it would be bad form to bring clam dip to communion . . . . .

  783. #783 Michael X
    July 27, 2008

    Sondra, that was (to whoever wrote it) well said.

    And was that Theresa chic mormon? So much talk about ‘pearls of great price’ and all. I wasn’t expecting one of them in all this Catholic insanity. I don’t even know where to begin when talking with most mormons. I get lost right at the beginning when I reflect on the fact that it’s simply christianity with some really silly ideas attached to it. I tend to either burst into laughter or my mouth hangs open as I shake my head.

  784. #784 Rayven Alandria
    July 27, 2008

    It is my opinion that some religious people think Atheism is the cause of horrors committed by Stalin etc…because in their twisted minds, Atheism is linked to Satan. They believe Satan sways us to forsake their imaginary friend, and therefor Atheism is part of a *plan* to overthrow the world.

    They simply cannot think in a rational manner and see how fucking absurd that thought is. In their minds EVERYTHING is an epic battle between gawdfairy and Satan. We don’t believe in godfairies, therefor we must be part of Satan’s plan. Since they personalize evil in the form of a Satan, and think of all things without gawdfairy worship as part of satan’s plan, they then think there must be some kind of philosophy, creed, and plan to Atheism.

    They will never comprehend us because they simply don’t want to. Some Christians get it, I know many who DO get it, but a certain type of religious person,(the brain dead),simply cannot grasp rational thought. We waste our time interacting with them.

  785. #785 speedwell
    July 27, 2008

    Hey Theresa, you look and sound just like a crazy, dirty street bum who walks up to you shouting nonsense. Or a Halloween witch mumbling arcane curses. Do you not understand yet that your magic words and fantasies are not real? You soon will.

  786. #786 Patricia
    July 27, 2008

    Shut up Sandi, you ignorant slut.
    As a christian woman, you are property and chattel of a man. You cannot follow in good faith the sacred word of gawd and post here. PZ is a teacher and a man. YOU are ordered to be silent by your own bible.
    Shut up, show us what a good faithful christian you are.
    1 Timothy 2:11 – 14.

  787. #787 JoJo
    July 27, 2008

    Pearl of great price

    Just for curiosity’s sake, what was Pearl’s price?

  788. #788 Wowbagger
    July 27, 2008

    Come on, don’t pull that ‘why do you ignore what it says about the value and place of women/shellfish/clothes of mixed fibre/pi=3/divorce/polygamy/pacifism/etc. in the bible?’ trick the atheists love so much.

    True Christians? know that, as soon as you accept jesus into your heart, you get to ignore any of the bible verses (his included) that don’t fit conveniently into your worldview.

    Otherwise all that christians who genuinely adhered to jesus’ teachings could do about someone who did something mean to them is a) forgive, b) think about their own sins, and c) pray.

    Does that sound like many christians we (and PZ) have heard from in the last few weeks?

  789. #789 Patricia
    July 27, 2008

    #789 – JoJo – Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it. Matthew 13:46

  790. #790 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    Sorry, Theresa @ 777. It’s not news; we know all about it, and have for a long time. And it’s not true…

    OK. Let me reword that: it may be true that you believe it, but your belief only demonstrates that you are credulous at best. It is not evidence. In fact, frankly, it is the opposite of evidence: “if the wackaloons believe it, it is going to take a lot more evidence than they’ve provided so far for me to accept it as valid.”

    As an aside, one of my favorite “arguments” has always been when Christiopaths bleat “but if the Bible is not true, that would mean that we are… are wrong!”

  791. #791 KM
    July 27, 2008

    Theresa:

    Ugh. I repeat: Please stop butchering the English language.

    Anyone else:

    Circumcision of the heart? Short of a cracker performing open-heart surgery on me, I have no idea what this blathering twat means by it…

  792. #792 Michael X
    July 27, 2008

    Actually JoJo, Pearl wasn’t too demanding. All she needed was a nice car and a pack of zig zags and she’d go with just about anyone. But up comes this guy offering “all he has” and well, Pearl knows a sucker when she sees one. The rest as they say is: mostly made up fable with little credible evidence.

  793. #793 Wowbagger
    July 27, 2008

    At best, the listing of misdeeds of atheists is an argument that life without god means a guaranteed moral deficieny.

    Unfortunately, since we know that atheists can – and do – perform good deeds, and those who believe in god can – and do – perform evil deeds, this argument holds about as much water as the average tennis racket.

  794. #794 Janine ID
    July 27, 2008

    I have just installed GreaseMonkey and the KillFile. I have done the click and drag on Sandi. But nothing happened. What have I done wrong?

  795. #795 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    Paper Hand at 561:

    There does seem to be some to be some who seriously believe at least some aspects of Shinto, whether or not they take the particular legends seriously. And in the 40′s, there were quite a few people willing to die for Shinto. Even suicide-bombers, the kamikaze!

    Yes! But when it didn’t work, and the Emperor declared that he was not a god, that aspect of the faith seems to have withered. Not gone, but much reduced. My sample is only a couple of dozen people, mostly under 50, but while the rites are still important for social cohesion, that is about it. They dance at O-Bon, but don’t think there are any ghosts visiting. (PS: thanks for the link!)

    There is perhaps another way, then, away from the binary absolutism — “you are on our side or the devil’s side” — that Rayven talks about in #786.

  796. #796 Carlie
    July 27, 2008

    Janine – refresh the post page, and there should be options next to each person’s name in their comment that say “[kill]” and “[hide comment]“. I didn’t realize it was dynamic on the page until I refreshed it after having it installed and the greasemonkey on and smiling.

  797. #797 Patricia
    July 27, 2008

    #777 – Theresa – Shut the fuck up.
    1 Timothy 2:11 – 14
    You christian women do not behave in a manner in keeping with scripture.

  798. #798 Janine ID
    July 27, 2008

    Thank You, Carlie. I now see [kill] and [hide comment]. This is going to help what little sanity I still have.

  799. #799 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    Oops! Sorry, bad example: O-Bon is Buddhist, not Shinto. The attitude was what I was getting at, though.

  800. #800 Owlmirror
    July 27, 2008

    Circumcision of the heart? Short of a cracker performing open-heart surgery on me, I have no idea what this blathering twat means by it…

    It’s a phrase that goes back to the Old Testament, which established that males had to have circumcised penes in order to be a member of the covenant with God. Of course, lacking a bit of penisskin did not necessarily mean that they would behave the way that God said they should, so someone with an “uncircumcised heart” might have a penis that was properly trimmed, but was misbehaving otherwise.

    And the concept, I see, made it into the New Testament as well.

  801. #801 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    “… circumcision of the heart.”
    “We are washed in the Blood of the Lamb.”
    “… and the Host BLED!!1!”

    Christiopaths do love their blood play, don’t they?

  802. #802 EnfantTerrible
    July 27, 2008

    I’m still getting way too much repetitive crap, though.

    The experience you are describing is “deja moo”. As in, “I’ve seen this BS before”. HTH. HAND.

  803. #803 Owlmirror
    July 27, 2008

    And, I should add, the phrase “uncircumcised heart” is used in conjunction with “stiff neck”, as in proud and stubborn. So the actual call to circumcise your heart is to make yourself humble.

    Oh, and I recently read an archeological analysis which suggested that circumcision was originally used as a method of marking slaves, like a brand, so circumcision may have either been something that was co-opted by the (presumed) slave people that became the Children of Israel as a tribal recognition sign, or was used to indicate that they were all equally slaves of God, or both. Again, note the association of being humbled or of humble station with being circumcised.

    This has been your religio-speak translation of the day.

  804. #804 paradoctor
    July 27, 2008

    The Catholics could solve this problem permanently, and on their own terms, merely by declaring that the Eucharist miracle is temporary; the wafer reverts to being a mere cracker when the ceremony ends. It’s all nonsense anyhow, I’m not sure why they haven’t settled on this convenient form of nonsense by now.

    Though of course to a professional offendee like Donohue, the present nonsense is convenient.

  805. #805 Wowbagger
    July 27, 2008

    Scarification rituals exist amonst many cultures – is there anything that indicates how far back (pre-pre-Judaism) the act of circumcision goes?

    At the moment i’m thinking it might have been instigated at a time when their society was more matriarchal. Why would any males think that doing that to that particular body part would be a good idea?

  806. #806 Patricia
    July 27, 2008

    #790 – Wowbagger – Good point. The bible belters really hate it when we quote their stupidity back to them.
    I’ve always wondered why Adam & Eve, in christian art, have navels? They are creations of gawd – not born of anyone…. They can’t answer you, it’s all lies and they are cowards.

  807. #807 KM
    July 27, 2008

    Owlmirror:

    Thanks for the explanation! That is, as bgbaysjr says, disturbing imagery typical of religious texts.

  808. #808 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    Owlmirror, thanks, but does that mean that when I was circumcised as a wee hatchling 50 years ago… they did it to make me God’s bitch? Oh, man…

  809. #809 Nerd of Redhead
    July 27, 2008

    I see Theresa did another drive by. She hasn’t realized yet that her mental diarrhea should go in the toilet like regular diarrhea. Theresa, if you stop by again, why don’t you say something that make is sounds like you actually have a brain that works, rather than repeating your religious instruction for the day. That makes you sound like you have an IQ of 50.

  810. #810 Sandi
    July 27, 2008

    “Shut up Sandi, you ignorant slut.
    As a christian woman, you are property and chattel of a man. You cannot follow in good faith the sacred word of gawd and post here. PZ is a teacher and a man. YOU are ordered to be silent by your own bible.
    Shut up, show us what a good faithful christian you are.
    1 Timothy 2:11 – 14.”

    OMG! You’re right! Thanks for pointing that out to me.
    Um, would someone mind punching my cunt again? I found I rather enjoyed that.

  811. #811 hf
    July 27, 2008

    bad example: O-Bon is Buddhist, not Shinto.

    Back when we broke Japan’s isolation, the people who took over in the name of the Emperor (removing the Shogun) decided to create a “pure” Japanese form of Shinto without all these foreign Buddhist influences. Of course they focused on the divinity of their mascot the Emperor. Now that people ignore that bit, they seem to have gone back to the authentic Japanese practice of taking whatever seems good to them and not worrying where it came from.

  812. #812 Wowbagger
    July 27, 2008

    Patricia, #808

    It’s all just evidence of the kind of rationalisations christians have to make. God gives them moral superiority, but because they’re human so they still sin. God is all-loving and just, but he doesn’t stop natural disasters or other bad things happening to good people. God gave us free will but will punish us for doing things he doesn’t like.

    I don’t know how people can accept that.

    Adam and Eve are shown having navels? That is weird. Just like Jesus (and the other biblical characters) in Western art are almost always very fair-skinned with brown/light-brown hair and blue eyes. Not exactly representative of the semitic people.

  813. #813 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    Thanks, hf! Nice reminder how cultures grow and change (both “top-down” and “bottom-up”) in response to changing conditions.

    Sort of reminds me of something, but I cannot for the life of me think what…

  814. #814 Carlie
    July 27, 2008

    OMG! You’re right! Thanks for pointing that out to me.
    Um, would someone mind punching my cunt again? I found I rather enjoyed that.

    Sorry, Sandi, your god’s rules, not ours. Don’t get all bent out of shape just because your god hates women.
    (the slut line, however, was from SNL)

  815. #815 Patricia
    July 27, 2008

    The circumcision thing:
    Gen. 17:10, Exo. 4:25, Exo. 12:48, Josh 5:2, Luke 1: 59 – 64, Luke 2:21, Acts 16:3, Gal. 5:2, OF THE HEART – Deut. 10:16, Col. 2:11, Rom. 2:28, 29.
    Christ on a cracker -
    10:16 – Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart, and be no more stiffnecked.
    Is there a doctor in the house? Do I have a foreskin on my heart?

  816. #816 SC
    July 27, 2008

    Um, would someone mind punching my cunt again? I found I rather enjoyed that.

    You’re welcome, you pathetic whining little fool.

  817. #817 karen
    July 27, 2008

    Wow. The Christian love just keeps on cummin’, doesn’t it? I didn’t get to comment on the Great Desecration thread, because I was trying to read all the comments before I posted one myself. Bad strategy.

    It amazes me how many people still just don’t get it!

    And I dunno if this Baba troll is a guy. I’m called “Baba” by the little boy I used to babysit, and I know other women called Baba as a substitute word for grandmother. I kinda feel like Anne and Lily (the rational ones), even though I don’t use Baba as my screen name here.

  818. #818 Fr.J
    July 27, 2008

    Sandi,

    “Um, would someone mind punching my cunt again? I found I rather enjoyed that.”

    You dirty girl. Um, for clarity, is that above or below your neck? I went to an Abstinence-only Catholic school so I’m a little slow in the sex dept.

    Fr.J

  819. #819 Logicel
    July 27, 2008

    @#820, LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  820. #820 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    Wowbagger @ 814, it is as if the poor bastards think, “My daddy loves me and can do anything but sometimes i am bad so he kicks my ass and every time he does he says he loves me but that he has to kick my ass because i am so bad but i… i don’t always know what it is i did wrong but i know that he loves me because feeds me most of the time and lets me live in his house and sometimes he gives me presents but when he doesn’t it is because i am bad and it is because he wants me to be good.”

    Breaks. Your. Heart.

    Oh, and the whole “did Adam and Eve have navels” thing was a huge controversy back in the day. That is why they sometimes were shown with a branch or their hands over their midsection.

  821. #821 Patricia
    July 27, 2008

    Sandi – No one here is punching your ‘cunt’.
    I am simply pointing out to you the stupidity and slave mentality of your faith.
    If you like suffering in silence, cursed child bearing, and being chattel, hey cool – go for it.
    But not me!
    Your bible, your sacred laws, shut the fuck up. Or, burn in hell.

  822. #822 Fernando Magyar
    July 27, 2008

    Re: Theresa @ 777,

    Jesus is the Pearl of great price

    No, more like a cheap cultured pearl that is produced by inserting an irritant into the mantle of an oyster. Sort of like inserting a religious meme into a mind. Apparently many people of religious persuasion seem to have intellectual capabilities on par with your typical bivalve. They metaphorically take the irritating truth and wrap it in many layers of polished irrationality so they no longer have to deal with hard truths of reality. One can only wish that they would just clam up.

  823. #823 Neural Transmissions
    July 27, 2008

    Sondra #779

    But this is something of which religion in general seems incapable – they always want respect, but reserve the right to give none in return.

    Amen

  824. #824 Moses
    July 27, 2008

    Sick bastards –

    On another note: It is just a fracking cracker, morons.

    Posted by: jorge666 | July 27, 2008 6:45 PM

    It’s just a crazy, you fucking asshole. People snap, they do stupid shit like that.

    As for the Church it was a Unitarian-Universalist Church. You know, the church where 16% of its members are atheists. Where they don’t believe that Jesus was divine. Where all religions, and those who have none, are accepted. Where social justice, support of equality and support of the rights of man (gay, straight or transgendered) are pillars of the community.

    Seriously, that Church group is likely as, or more, progressive than the average of the “liberal” members of this blog. Yet, out of complete fucking ignorance, you’ve got to open your mouth project some bullshit of your own to make a point. Drop dead, fuck wad.

    Here’s the part you left off:

    The church, like many other Unitarian Universalist churches, promotes progressive social work, such as desegregation and fighting for the rights of women and gays. The Knoxville congregation has provided sanctuary for political refugees, fed the homeless and founded a chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union, according to its Web site.

    You’re as bad as the Catholic Trolls. All balls, no brains.

  825. #825 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    Patricia at 817:
    Is there a doctor in the house? Do I have a foreskin on my heart?

    Well, you have a little sack (sort of) that your heart lives in called the pericardium. Mine got inflamed once (who knew the flu could do that) and it put me in the hospital. There was never any talk about removing it, though, but it never got very bad.

    The Aztecs might have been experimenting with cardiac circumcision for religious, but the priests burned their books (as usual) so we don’t know…

    (I am a terrible typist, but when I first typed “preasts” in the line above, I thought is was a gift from doG.)

  826. #826 Pierce R. Butler
    July 27, 2008

    Michael X @ # 269: … criticizing the Jewish religion? But, don’t worry. They’ll commit some oppressive act soon enough and we’ll be there to criticize it.

    Depends on your definitions of “Jewish” and “oppressive“, doesn’t it?

  827. #827 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    “… cardiac circumcision for religious reasons…” @ 827

  828. #828 Logicel
    July 27, 2008

    David #652 writes: I am, however, wondering why you are spending so much time and energy writing about something which you obviously do not believe to be true. You have mentioned how this is so unimportant to you. If it is, why spend so much time writing about it and with such hatred in your writing?
    ____

    Religious beliefs are personally unimportant to atheists, however, the existence of religious beliefs and their corresponding institutions with their exemption from criticism, corruption, scrutiny, taxes, etc., is one giant meaty topic that us atheists will continue discuss/debate/confront/challenge until changes are made. The free ride that religion has been on is and will continue to get very bumpy for its riders.

  829. #829 Neural T
    July 27, 2008

    So I actually bothered to look up 1 Tim 2:11-14:

    A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. But women[a] will be saved[b] through childbearing–if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety.

    Wow. Just, wow.

  830. #830 Patricia
    July 27, 2008

    #827 – Thank you!!!

  831. #831 SC
    July 27, 2008

    If there’s something you need,
    oh, that you’ve never ever ever ever had,
    oh, you’ve never had it,
    oh, honey, don’t you just sit there cryin’
    don’t just sit there feelin’ bad.
    No, no, no.
    You’d better get up
    - now don’t ya understand?
    Raise your hand!

  832. #832 KM
    July 27, 2008

    Logicel @ 830:

    *applause*

    Very well-said.

  833. #833 bgbaysjr
    July 27, 2008

    Logicel @ 830: perfect!

    Patricia @ 832: you are welcome!

  834. #834 Kel
    July 27, 2008

    Logicel wins the thread!

  835. #835 Candiru
    July 27, 2008

    …what you did was sacrilegious…

    I’m impressed that Mr. Kutai spelled “sacrilegious” correctly!

  836. #836 JoJo
    July 27, 2008

    Owlmirror wrote:

    Oh, and I recently read an archeological analysis which suggested that circumcision was originally used as a method of marking slaves, like a brand, so circumcision may have either been something that was co-opted by the (presumed) slave people that became the Children of Israel as a tribal recognition sign, or was used to indicate that they were all equally slaves of God, or both. Again, note the association of being humbled or of humble station with being circumcised.

    I’m reminded of an old joke. Moses is talking to God and says: “So the Arabs get all of the oil and we have to cut off the tips of our WHAT?”

  837. #837 jorge666
    July 27, 2008

    #826 Moses with his balls in an uproar wrote

    It’s just a crazy, you fucking asshole. People snap, they do stupid shit like that.

    Wait until the rest of the story comes in. The psycho fuck was yelling “hateful things” as he launched a few rounds at the congregation. Maybe they should have has some watermelons there (see other post)

    As for the Church it was a Unitarian-Universalist Church. You know, the church where 16% of its members are atheists. Where they don’t believe that Jesus was divine. Where all religions, and those who have none, are accepted. Where social justice, support of equality and support of the rights of man (gay, straight or transgendered) are pillars of the community.

    All the more reason for some deranged right wingnuts in that part of the country to assault them. After all, we are speaking of Klan country here.

    Seriously, that Church group is likely as, or more, progressive than the average of the “liberal” members of this blog. Yet, out of complete fucking ignorance, you’ve got to open your mouth project some bullshit of your own to make a point. Drop dead, fuck wad.

    What orbit did you just come out of? I referenced the news story and published the standard … which in any language besides whatever kOOkian dialect you speak means there is more to the story.

    Here’s the part you left off:

    The church, like many other Unitarian Universalist churches, promotes progressive social work, such as desegregation and fighting for the rights of women and gays. The Knoxville congregation has provided sanctuary for political refugees, fed the homeless and founded a chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union, according to its Web site.

    I left off the rest of complete story as it would be a copyright violation to reprint the whole thing, asshole. I referenced the article, and indicated that there was much more to the story. Sorry not to translate that to fucktardese to you could understand it.

    You’re as bad as the Catholic Trolls. All balls, no brains.

    Sure beats some ignant jackoff just stumbling in from a Sunday amateur pharmaceuitical study sans balls AND brains

  838. #838 Patricia
    July 27, 2008

    #831 – See, this bullshit just keeps on rolling.
    I wonder, PZ and others on the blog – what do you think, should we quote book and verse of scripture to these fools, or have the posters here had SO much bible bullshit that biblical quotes drive you mad?
    Fuck em’, I’ll take on any bible fool. *grin*
    Up to you ILK. ;)

  839. #839 Neural T
    July 27, 2008

    I left off the rest of complete story as it would be a copyright violation to reprint the whole thing, asshole.

    Wow, you are the first person in the history of the Internet to care about that.

  840. #840 jagannath
    July 27, 2008

    Maybe quoting would work if the religious people would read their own holy books but how often the vapid ranters really know their own books?

  841. #841 David
    July 27, 2008

    @824 –

    What are the irritating truths you believe religious people would rather ignore?

  842. #842 jagannath
    July 27, 2008

    Eh, it is a cracker, perhaps?

  843. #843 jorge666
    July 27, 2008

    *841 Neural T

    Why should that be so strange on a (semi at the moment) scientific blog where the veracity of information is buttressed by following the rules of referencing and the respect for the copyright rules?

    Additionally, what is the point of reproducing the entire article consuming bandwidth where a short into and a pointer/link would do? Several of the trolls have posted 45 page nauseating missives where a couple of lines and a pointer (which would have been graciously ignored).

    Additional information can always be garnered from the original source by clicking the link at any given time.

  844. #844 KM
    July 27, 2008

    jorge666:

    You’re right. The whole story wasn’t in. It still isn’t.

    From another source:

    (http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2008/jul/27/neighbors-accused-shooter-everyones-friend-hated-c/)

    He had his own sense of belief about religion, that’s the impression I got of him,” said neighbor Karen Massey. “We were talking one day when my daughter graduated from Bible college, and I told him I was a Christian, then he almost turned angry.

    “He seemed to get angry at that.”

    According to Massey, Adkisson talked frequently about his parents who “made him go to church all his life … he was forced to do that.”

    Are you willing to suggest that all of those who question or otherwise have problems with Christianity “sick bastards” or “psychotic” because this one man who seems to have questioned or had some problems with Chistianty killed some folks?

    While you’re painting Christians in general with your broad “sick bastard” brush… How would you like to deal with Christians like Greg McKandry, killed while blocking the gunman from the rest of the congregation, and the Christians who reportedly risked their own lives to wrestle the gunman to the ground? Where do they fit in?

    Sure, some Christians are psychotic and some are sick bastards. This guy, whatever his religious beliefs or lackthereof, may have been a bit psychotic and a sick bastard. You don’t know enough to make the judgment that that individual — let alone Christians in general — are either.

    You jumped the gun on this one. That’s all people are calling you on.

  845. #845 Theresa
    July 27, 2008

    To Wowbagger #781 Answers to your questions following:
    “What I want to ask the believers…how does the fact that both Hitler and Stalin(religious or atheistic notwithstanding), were able to do what they did, help you believe there’s a kind, loving and all-powerful being who will help you in times of need?”
    Wowbagger further states, “The same with the priests. For me, it’s not so much about the Church covering it up; it’s about the ridiculous notion that an all-powerful, omniscient
    benevolent Deity would let those who were charged with “tending to His flock”, commit those unforgiveable acts.”
    Answers: There is more going on here than you realize. We are all battling with our own salvation. There is a spiritual battle in full force. Open your eyes to the Truth.
    All of man’s words, his knowledge, his intelligence, his man-made wisdom, his freethinking, his pride are naught unto our God. For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate. Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? 1Cor.19
    It is awful when men are consumed with evil, men like Stalin and Hitler in particular, who FREELY choose to do evil. They made the choice. Who knows when or where this occurred, but somewhere along the way they of their own volition used FREE WILL -{God’s gift to man) to commit evil.
    God, in His infinite wisdom and mercy would never force anyone to do anything,(even for Salvation’s sake), he or she doesn’t want to do. It’s an everyday thing. We get to pick good or evil all the time.

    Oh, yeah, by the way I am a practing Catholic. As for my earlier post about the Pearl of Great Price, that was the Scripture reading today. Jesus in the Eucharist is the Pearl that we should be willing(by Free Will) to accept as Lord and Savior. Jesus’ words, I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.” Jn.6:35

    Now to the question of the pediphile Priests and those who covered up their sins. I too, am very much upset and outraged at their behavior, and disappointed to see them fail us so unbelievably. Catholics have wondered how could they do this too. How could they stand there in front of us knowing what they did? It all brings heartbreak to not only the victims, but to all of us who recognize that as evil. Trust me, they are not all that way. Those who are true to their vows, good holy priests are suffering for the sins of the others too. I too am appalled that some of the Bishops hid things and moved them around-the sinful priests. This causes us shame and horror. Please understand it is not the whole Catholic brood–but some who have sinned in this awful way-abusing the innocent. I say I am sorry for what some have done, but I also say the legal system will deal with it all for now, and God will unleash His fury in no uncertain manner. He is a God of justice. He offers you love and not fear. He gives you FREE WILL.
    That is what these evil men did- they freely chose to do evil and harm to innocent individuals with no care or concern for all the damages that would be done to the victims, the Church, and to their salvation.
    Lord have mercy on us all!

    They will look on me, the one they have pierced, and they will mourn for Him…Zech12:11

  846. #846 Wowbagger
    July 27, 2008

    Jesus is the Pearl…

    Hmm, let’s break that down shall we?

    A ‘pearl’ is a small speck of crap with layers and layers of shiny stuff surrounding it which results in an object that some people think is pretty.

    Therefore, I agree. The ‘crap’ at the centre is religion. The ‘layers of shiny stuff’ are the apologetics and rationalisations created to distract people from seeing that, at the centre, it’s actually a piece of crap. The ‘people who think it’s pretty’ are the religious.

    Funny, I don’t find either pearls or religion particularly attractive.

  847. #847 jorge666
    July 27, 2008

    Anyone who walks in a group of people and starts losing shotgun rounds into the crowd is one sick bastard. Cut the bullshit excuses.

  848. #848 KM
    July 27, 2008

    PS, jorge666:

    My last post to you wasn’t meant to be snarky. In re-reading it, that’s less clear than I’d like it to be. I just thought that (a) the new information, though it’s hear-say at best, might be relevant and (b) a clearer explanation of why the “sick bastards” comment, without some serious qualifications, wasn’t really appropriate in this case.

  849. #849 Patricia
    July 27, 2008

    #762 – Marcus Ranum – BBQ, -SANGRIA- , and fornication – I join you in solidarity.
    The freaks are cowards.

  850. #850 Wowbagger
    July 27, 2008

    Theresa,

    Free will means choice. If that’s the case, answer me this:

    What choice did your god give to the murdered and molested? Or are you claiming they deserved it?

  851. #851 David
    July 27, 2008

    Kudos, Theresa! It’s not easy to take a stand for your faith around here.

  852. #852 cicely
    July 27, 2008

    paradoctor @806:

    The Catholics could solve this problem permanently, and on their own terms, merely by declaring that the Eucharist miracle is temporary; the wafer reverts to being a mere cracker when the ceremony ends. It’s all nonsense anyhow, I’m not sure why they haven’t settled on this convenient form of nonsense by now.

    Though of course to a professional offendee like Donohue, the present nonsense is convenient.

    The problem with having the miracle end when the ceremony ends is that then, they can’t send consecrated wafers off-site to the sick and elderly who can’t make it to the meeting, and they can’t put one in the proper vessel, the name of which escapes me at the moment (I know it was mentioned either up-thread or in one or more of the other Crackergate-related threads, but there are so many posts, a