Pharyngula

What are we, lepers?

Elizabeth Dole is continuing her campaign in North Carolina of smearing her opponent, Kay Hagan, for simply associating with atheists. We atheists are the “most vile, radical liberals in America,” out to wage war on Christmas and stock boy scout troops with homosexuals, and we actively support political candidates who are atheists. I know … how dare we.

I have a personal reason to be offended, however. The Dole ads cite endorsements by two atheists, FriendlyAtheist.com and DaylightAtheism.org. Now hang on…what’s so scary about the Friendly atheist? And Daylight Atheism sounds positively pleasant. Couldn’t they find one mean, cruel, truly frightening atheist to give a testimonial, like maybe one with an obscure and somewhat intimidatingly intellectual name?

Yeah, I’m feeling left out.

I will say anyway that if you live in North Carolina and you have an opportunity to vote for the open-minded and thoughtful Kay Hagan and against the Rovian slimebeast named Elizabeth Dole, please do so. If she’s got the endorsement of the Friendly Atheist and Daylight Atheism and even Pharyngula, you know she’s on the side of goodness and light.

Comments

  1. #1 Ichthyic
    October 9, 2008

    What are we, lepers?

    speak for yourself, I’m an ex-leper.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U74s8nFE7No

  2. #2 Kseniya
    October 9, 2008

    Well, Hitler was an atheist, so, there you go.

  3. #3 Whitney
    October 9, 2008

    Seriously, supporting political candidates with our own views? Oh, the horrors of representation!

    In other news, slimebeast has been added to my repertoire or insults. Thanks, PZ!

  4. #4 Kel
    October 9, 2008

    Got to love conservative fearmongering. “Look, they want change. Be afraid!”

  5. #5 I am so wise
    October 9, 2008

    I like Christmas.

  6. #6 Kseniya
    October 9, 2008

    Got to love conservative fearmongering. “Look, they want change. Be afraid!”

    Right! And yet McPalin is running on a “change” platform, as if the best cure for eight years of GOP rule is four more years of GOP rule. Impeccable logic, eh? I guess there’s “good change” and “bad change”, and anything that promotes secularism is automatically bad, so… so there you have it!

  7. #7 Will Lyle
    October 9, 2008

    Eh, I would have personally preferred Jim Neal as our senate nominee (as he is gay), but Kay Hagan is just as good.

    I seriously doubt that Dole will be able to stay afloat this year. Even most conservatives realize that she spends NO time actually doing her job. She spent all of 16 days in our state last year… 16! With N.C becoming a swing state and Dole’s sheer ineffectiveness, I don’t think we need to worry too much.

  8. #8 Kel
    October 9, 2008

    Right! And yet McPalin is running on a “change” platform, as if the best cure for eight years of GOP rule is four more years of GOP rule. Impeccable logic, eh?

    like putting lipstick on an elephant

    I guess there’s “good change” and “bad change”

    Don’t forget “change you can believe in”

  9. #9 Coturnix
    October 9, 2008

    Dole is going down and nobody from her own party here seems to care, certainly not enough to want to help her.

  10. #10 cactusren
    October 9, 2008

    hmmm…does this mean that no one I know can ever be elected to political office? Perhaps I need to make friends with lots of republicans…

  11. #11 QrazyQat
    October 9, 2008

    I read Friendly Atheist all the time and he’s really really friendly. That’s got Dole all scared? Well, she is a conservative and several studies now as well as the past 7 years have shown they’re pants wetting cowards.

  12. #12 raven
    October 9, 2008

    Dole is a moron. Hopefully an exincumbent soon.

    The main issue in the campaign has to be Theothuglican misrule resulting in a failing economy. The Dow is now down 5,000 points, the US is beyond broke, and we seem to be heading into a severe recession.

    It’s the economy, stupid. The piles of dead bodies from a pointless, long running war don’t help either.

    Can she be as bad as Palin? There are several film clips of her “appearances” in Florida and Ohio. They seem to be crosses between a KKK rally, fundie idiot drool-ins, and white trash with too much moonshine. One of the highlights is members of the audience calling for Barack Obama to be killed. The FBI is investigating the latter.

    Dole and Palin have the fundie xian with an automatic rifle, IEDS, and brains the size of walnuts vote sewed up tight. Who knew there were so many of them?

  13. #13 Sman
    October 9, 2008

    Not to set a strawman alight… sure I am . Now, I know one of the reasons why the senator needs viagra!

  14. #14 Brian
    October 9, 2008

    Right! And yet McPalin is running on a “change” platform, as if the best cure for eight years of GOP rule is four more years of GOP rule.

    Spare any change for an ex-leper?

  15. #15 Brad D
    October 9, 2008

    Damn, someone beat me to the Viagra joke.

    I was going to suggest that perhaps her bitterness is due to a certain someone running out of (or alternately having too much of) the “little blue pill”

  16. #16 whololo
    October 9, 2008

    PZ, if you changed your forum’s name to “hateful atheist” or something like that I think they would be more prone to quote you =)

  17. #17 Janine ID AKA The Lone Drinker
    October 9, 2008

    Well, Thomas Covenant was not exactly a nice person.

  18. #18 Simon Scott
    October 9, 2008

    @2: not that its relevant, but Hitler was in fact a Roman Catholic. So there ya go…..

  19. #19 Katkinkate
    October 9, 2008

    I’m sure McCain/Palin are for change. By now the carpet probably needs to be changed in the oval office. Then they have to do the curtins and eventually the apolstery on the cushy chairs will need to be replace. Might as well change the colour scheme while they are at it.

  20. #20 Janine ID AKA The Lone Drinker
    October 9, 2008

    Simon Scott, Kseniya was joking. She does things like that.

  21. #21 csrster
    October 9, 2008

    Janine, I know what you mean.
    You sacrifice everything have you have time and again for complete strangers. You struggle, you fight, you survive to fight again, and eventually give up your life for others. But you commit one lousy little rape along the way …

  22. #22 Newfie
    October 9, 2008

    Religion is the barb of the anchor that will always drag in the mud of superstition behind the progression of humanity. The length of the chain is always changing, but maybe someday we’ll get that anchor close enough that we can pull it up for good, and get the ship up to full speed.

  23. #23 Rey Fox
    October 9, 2008

    “out to wage war on Christmas and stock boy scout troops with homosexuals, and we actively support political candidates who are atheists.”

    So?

  24. #24 God
    October 9, 2008

    PZ you never fail to amaze me.

  25. #25 elbuho
    October 9, 2008

    Also ‘Pharyngula’ is so hard to pronounce. ‘Pharynglear’ anybody?

  26. #26 Sleeping at the Console
    October 9, 2008

    I don’t get where they get this idea that anyone is fighting a war on Christmas. Are their rights to celebrate their midwinter holiday of choice somehow infringed by the mere existence of atheists? Can anyone explain? Just because I don’t celebrate the same thing that Christians do, doesn’t mean either of us can’t do what we want.

  27. #27 speedwell
    October 9, 2008

    Hey God, stick around. You might learn something.

  28. #28 Capital Dan
    October 9, 2008

    I don’t know PZ. I think they’re afraid to quote you because of that whole “random biological ejaculations” thing. They simply don’t know how to approach that.

  29. #29 bastion
    October 9, 2008

    We atheists are the “most vile, radical liberals in America,” out to wage war on Christmas and stock boy scout troops with homosexuals, and we actively support political candidates who are atheists.

    I get the impression that Liddy said that like it was a bad thing.

  30. #30 Nephmon
    October 9, 2008

    I know it wouldn’t have quite the same pith, but shouldn’t the title of this post really be, “What are we, sufferers of Hansen’s disease?” I read a letter recently (and I really wish I could remember where) from a doctor and sufferer of Hansen’s, decrying the fact that sufferers are still tainted with the term “leper”, which apparently is akin to calling a physically handicapped person a cripple. Just thought I’d mention it.

    BTW, why does Dole assume the godless are automatically Liberals? I’ve known a couple of staunch Republicans who also happen to have enough sanity to be atheists (and anti-astrology and other such woo) as well.

  31. #31 ben
    October 9, 2008

    I’m an evil unfriendly night-time atheist and I endorse this message.

  32. #32 Ploon
    October 9, 2008

    Atheists are “most vile”. Wow, doesn’t that qualify as hate speech? Isn’t this the kind of language that would incite people to take up the pitchforks and torches? I’m disgusted that this passes for political discourse in the U.S. (even in the current hyperpolarised climate).

    OTOH, I find it hilarious that allowing atheists and homosexuals to be Boy Scout troop leaders is somehow threatening. Yeah, because the religious types have done such a bang-up job of not buggering young boys under their authority and protection, right? Right? Right. I suppose none of the paedophiles who sneak their way into Boy Scout leadership are good, upstanding christians. The link between atheism and moral corruption and between homosexuality and paedophilia in these people’s minds must be part of the schizoid delusions caused by their RDS (Religious Dementia Syndrome, formerly dementia religiosa).

  33. #33 Gene
    October 9, 2008

    Well, I don’t actually live in North Carolina (Japan), but my parents do, so I just sent in my absentee ballot the other day with votes for Obama/Biden and a straight Democratic ticket. It’s a great thrill to be voting both for Obama and against Liddy Dole, in a dead-heat swing state no less ( I’m from Massachusetts, where I always voted out of civic duty rather than the idea that I was actually making a difference).

  34. #34 Rick R
    October 9, 2008

    “Rovian slimebeast”

    I’m stealing that.

  35. #35 Nephmon
    October 9, 2008

    #32: speaking of the hyperpolarized climate, have you seen the IMDB user ratings for An American Carol (right wing satire on Michael Moore and Liberalism in general)? A total of 71.4% give it either 1/10 or 10/10, with hardly anyone coming in around the 5/10 mark.

    I would like to say that the ratings could predict the result of the election, but the unfortunately 10/10s have a slight edge on the 1/10s. Though possibly that’s due to Liberals proving what good sports they are and giving the movie a high rating. Either way, it’s interesting to see a movie whose ratings are the opposite of the usual Poisson-like distribution of, say, Gattaca.

  36. #36 Nephmon
    October 9, 2008

    Gattaca, I mean.

  37. #37 Greta Christina
    October 9, 2008

    Just a quick suggestion:

    If you donate to Hagan’s campaign? Drop her an email and tell her why. If we get a Senator in office who recognizes atheists as a valuable political ally and a political force to be reckoned with, it would be really, really cool.

    Here’s what I wrote, btw. (Cross-posted from Daylight Atheism and Friendly Atheist.)

    Hello. My name is Greta Christina, and although I don’t live in North Carolina, I just made a donation to your campaign. I wanted to let you know that I did so prompted by recent posts on the Daylight Atheism and Friendly Atheist blogs.

    I am appalled by Elizabeth Dole’s open bigotry and hatred towards atheists — a bigotry and hatred that would not be tolerated towards any other religious group. And I am encouraged by Kay Hagan’s recognition that atheists are citizens, who have a right to have our voices heard in the political arena.

    My funds are limited (especially since I’ve been donating to other political campaigns this year), so my donation was small. But I plan to write about this on my own blog, and encourage my readers (some who are atheists, many others who aren’t but support atheists’ rights) to support your campaign as well. Thank you again for your recognition of our growing community, and please know that we are grateful and will not forget it.

  38. #38 ben
    October 9, 2008

    I’m not sure I want any part of this game. I’m not part of a “religious group”, and I don’t think that an attack against atheism is “bigotry”. It’s bad reasoning, and it’s willfully ignorant, yes, but those are things we argue against rather than crying about. Let’s not be sucked into the special-pleading game.

  39. #39 GraceM
    October 9, 2008

    Capital Dan:

    I don’t know PZ. I think they’re afraid to quote you because of that whole “random biological ejaculations” thing. They simply don’t know how to approach that.

    Here it is 4 o’clock in the morning and I just got my laugh for the day, from you and others on this board. Thanks.
    I knew there had to be a reason why Elizabeth Dole annoyed me all those years. The mind boggles. They can’t have much faith in their faith if a friendly atheist and a daylight atheist are so threatening to them.

  40. #40 Mandy
    October 9, 2008

    He’s not a leper, he’s a very naughty boy!

  41. #41 Daniel R
    October 9, 2008

    Come to France: here, no problem with atheism. If a candidate speaks of God, everybody laughs. I even don’t know if such or such politician believes in God or not: it is their private life.

    No problem if you believe in God or other Krishna. No problem if you don’t. You are free of religion and free from religion. Free. Drawback: our politicians are liars also.

  42. #42 Vestigial
    October 9, 2008

    “pharyngula” is about as intellectual as “phrenology”

  43. #43 Sphere Coupler
    October 9, 2008

    I have no idea where Miss Dole could have gotten the notion that christmas is in peril, unless it’s perhaps this guy.I haven’t heard that he has declared.

    You’re a mean one, Mr. Grinch.
    You really are a heel.
    You’re as cuddly as a cactus,
    You’re as charming as an eel.
    Mr. Grinch.

    You’re a bad banana
    With a greasy black peel.

    You’re a monster, Mr. Grinch.
    Your heart’s an empty hole.
    Your brain is full of spiders,
    You’ve got garlic in your soul.
    Mr. Grinch.

    I wouldn’t touch you, with a
    thirty-nine-and-a-half foot pole.

    You’re a vile one, Mr. Grinch.
    You have termites in your smile.
    You have all the tender sweetness
    Of a seasick crocodile.
    Mr. Grinch.

    Given the choice between the two of you
    I’d take the seasick crockodile.

    You’re a foul one, Mr. Grinch.
    You’re a nasty, wasty skunk.
    Your heart is full of unwashed socks
    Your soul is full of gunk.
    Mr. Grinch.

    The three words that best describe you,
    are, and I quote: “Stink. Stank. Stunk.”

    You’re a rotter, Mr. Grinch.
    You’re the king of sinful sots.
    Your heart’s a dead tomato splot
    With moldy purple spots,
    Mr. Grinch.

    Your soul is an apalling dump heap overflowing
    with the most disgraceful assortment of deplorable
    rubbish imaginable,
    Mangled up in tangled up knots.

    You nauseate me, Mr. Grinch.
    With a nauseaus super-naus.
    You’re a crooked jerky jockey
    And you drive a crooked horse.
    Mr. Grinch.

    You’re a three decker saurkraut and toadstool
    sandwich
    With arsenic sauce.

    Copyright ę 1957, Dr. Seuss.

    Actually I think we need a few more holidays,perhaps something between labor day and thanksgiving…any idea’s?

  44. #44 Ploon
    October 9, 2008

    “pharyngula” is about as intellectual as “phrenology” “nephrology”

    There, fixed. Easy mistake to make. Especially if you’re dyslexic, or, you know, thick.

  45. #45 llewelly
    October 9, 2008

    Those people over at FriendlyAtheist and Daylight Atheism are actually Borat Atheists in disguise. You can see this clearly in how they’ve thrown in with the partisan Kay Hagan and offended Elizabeth Dole. Another big PR fiasco for Borat Atheism.

  46. #46 Dahan
    October 9, 2008

    Who knew that I was so scary? It’s great being an atheist, I’m gonna wear my atheist t-shirt around town so I can walk past dark alleyways without fear, who’s gonna mess with anyone as whack as an atheist!

    Boo!

  47. #47 Cuttlefish, OM
    October 9, 2008

    http://digitalcuttlefish.blogspot.com/2008/10/i-thought-i-saw-atheist-in-north.html

    I thought I saw an atheist
    Approach a voting booth–
    Her voice was shrill, her eyes were wide
    Her manner quite uncouth;
    She tried to force her views on us
    And exercise control–
    I looked again–I’m wrong once more
    Why, this was Libby Dole.

    I thought I saw an atheist
    Discriminate and hate;
    Deride a weak minority
    Because the hour’s late–
    To try to stir the masses
    She’s been losing in the polls;
    I looked again, and listened well–
    Those words were Libby Dole’s

    I thought I saw an atheist,
    So “radical” and “vile”
    Wage war against America–
    A villain with a smile
    Promoting hate, promoting fear
    For petty, selfish gain–
    I looked again, and clearly saw
    The Libby Dole campaign

    I thought I saw an atheist
    Stand up and say “no more!”
    I will not be your scapegoat
    Like so many times before!
    Americans, stand up as Christian
    Muslim, Jew, and Pagan,
    Or atheist, or anything,
    And cast your vote for Hagan!

  48. #48 Bobber
    October 9, 2008

    I live in north-central North Carolina, at the tip of the Piedmont region that includes Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and Raleigh. If you look at a map of the area, you’ll see those three cities in a line, east-to-west. Venture about 10 miles to other side of that line, and you’ve entered Dole country (or more appropriately, Helms country): a land of McCain-Palin yard signs, of mild-mannered ex-school teachers who whisper to you “I can’t vote for that colored feller Obama”, where I have driven and counted dozens of churches during a sixty-mile trip, but not a single book store. I asked my 8th-grade social studies class how the universe was created, and I found that over 90% said “God did it”, and more than half of them believed He did it in 6 days.

    I moved here from New England about four years ago, and I was astonished to find that most of the stereotypes non-Southerners have about the the south are true. The area in which I live wallows in ignorance, willful and otherwise; racism remains a problem, especially among the older generations; religion is allowed to intrude into anything and everything, including faculty meetings at the school I used to teach at. The local newspapers are full of letters from average citizens who decry the lack of Christian control over government, education, and society in general, and who call me and my friends “the problem with America.” Strangers have accosted my wife for the progressive bumper stickers she has plastered all over her car, blaming her for what they believe will be the destruction of the United States.

    That said, Dole is still trailing in the polls to Kay Hagan, and Obama is tied with McCain in this normally very red state. I like to think that the influx of secular blue-staters like myself has something to do with the changing preferences of the voting populace. People are waking up, at least in the upper south, and we new arrivals with our liberal ideas and our atheistic ways are all too happy to throw some more intellectual ice water into the collective face of the Sleepy Southerners.

  49. #49 a lurker
    October 9, 2008

    How many Elizabeth Doles does does it take to change a light bulb. A: None. Light bulbs were invented by an atheist so she prefers darkness

    /I know: really bad.

  50. #50 Ian
    October 9, 2008

    “Rovian slimebeast”

    That’s an absolute classic. You should submit it to Russell Davies for inclusion in an upcoming Doctor Who story….

  51. #51 No One Of Consequence
    October 9, 2008

    It’s probably been mentioned, but shouldn’t the Evil Atheist Alliance headed by PZ and Dawkins endorse Dole and Bush..err.. I mean McCain?

    Unless the atheism part is more important than the evil part, because it is evil on so many levels.

  52. #52 s1mplex
    October 9, 2008

    Cuttlefish -

    I got chills from that. Thank you!

  53. #53 Icelander
    October 9, 2008

    I want to send her a picture of me holding my little girl, maybe at Christmas-time, with the caption “My daddy’s an atheist and he loves me.”

    As a matter of fact, I think that would be a great way to protest this. Send her pictures of yourself doing something wholesome and American with a note on the back about how you’re an American, too, and don’t like being discriminated against. But it’s really important to keep it civil.

  54. #54 DaveG
    October 9, 2008

    PZ, as baaaaaaad as you think you are, RRS spews far more venom. Why not cop their trip?

  55. #55 Icelander
    October 9, 2008

    I want to send her a picture of me holding my little girl, maybe at Christmas-time, with the caption “My daddy’s an atheist and he loves me.”

    As a matter of fact, I think that would be a great way to protest this. Send her pictures of yourself doing something wholesome and American with a note on the back about how you’re an American, too, and don’t like being discriminated against. But it’s really important to keep it civil.

  56. #56 Icelander
    October 9, 2008

    I want to send her a picture of me holding my little girl, maybe at Christmas-time, with the caption “My daddy’s an atheist and he loves me.”

    As a matter of fact, I think that would be a great way to protest this. Send her pictures of yourself doing something wholesome and American with a note on the back about how you’re an American, too, and don’t like being discriminated against. But it’s really important to keep it civil.

  57. #57 Greg
    October 9, 2008

    The non-religious make up 16% of the population. That’s more than African-Americans. Can you imagine the reaction if she were blasting Hagan for associating with blacks? The discourse in this country astounds me.

  58. #58 Questioner
    October 9, 2008

    Why should we expect anything other than disparagement from a class of people we so routinely and cavalierly accuse of being delusional and mentally ill?

  59. #59 RamblinDude
    October 9, 2008

    No, we’re worse than lepers!

    We won’t stay on our goddamn colony!

    The area in which I live wallows in ignorance, willful and otherwise; racism remains a problem, especially among the older generations; religion is allowed to intrude into anything and everything, including faculty meetings at the school I used to teach at. The local newspapers are full of letters from average citizens who decry the lack of Christian control over government, education, and society in general, and who call me and my friends “the problem with America.”

    Much of rural, small town Indiana is the same way. The farmers especially have a tight community, and church life and religion connect everyone. Jesus is Lord, and no way are they going to vote for that “Muslim fella” who wants abortions, and mocks the bible, and is going to take all our guns away.

  60. #60 Owen
    October 9, 2008

    I’m in NC, and very much looking forward to voting, donating, and probably volunteering for Kay. Luckily, the DSCC’s ads down here have been pummeling Dole very effectively.

  61. #61 freelunch
    October 9, 2008

    PZ, your problem is that you got into a fight with the Catholics. If you’d gotten into a fight with Methodists or Baptists, you’d be right there, but if there’s one thing the thousands of evangelical/fundamentalist sects, denominations , and non-denominations who squabble about how accurately Kirk Cameron presents the Last Days in the Left Behind movies can agree on, it’s that Catholics aren’t proper Christians. So, as the enemy of their enemy, you might not be a friend, but you just aren’t as bad as the rest of those atheists.

  62. #62 Darth Wader
    October 9, 2008

    According to a recent poll atheists are the lest trusted minority in America.
    I guess thats because atheists don’t have any physical traits that can be used to identify them. What are you hiding!?
    Also those unfortunate drive-by mockings.

  63. #63 William
    October 9, 2008

    “First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win.” – Gandhi

    This is just one step in the evolution of atheists coming out on the political stage.

  64. #64 Tim Fuller
    October 9, 2008

    Dam dude. At least Dawkins made that list of the English nut on your last post. I think you are being righteously disrespected. It’s like, just what the hell have you gotta do to get noticed as an outspoken atheist in this country??!! Sure can’t fault you for trying, but if having the dominant Catholic blowhard trying to get you fired for wanton and reckless crackercide and raising all kinds of ruckus doesn’t do it, what does?

    I suppose you could, monk-like, set yourself on fire in front of the sacred destination of your choice as proof of your belief in nothing, but that’s gotta hurt, and then we would be labeled as even crazier than before. Wonder why it works for the monks? They get excellent PR.

    Enjoy.

  65. #65 Pierce R. Butler
    October 9, 2008

    Icelander @ # 53 et seq.: But it’s really important to keep it cievil.

    Ahhh, that’s better now.

  66. #66 raven
    October 9, 2008

    I don’t get where they get this idea that anyone is fighting a war on Christmas.

    Oh No!!! The war on Christmas seems to come earlier every year but this is ridiculous. We are still in the middle of the War on Halloween. This is my favorite War against holiday but lately the fundies have been very subdued. It might be dawning on the brighter among them that werewolves and lepruchuans are make believe and their kids might be ticked off at them.

    There is no war against Xmas. Dole is simply stringing irrelevant buzz words together because she is dumb and all the Theothuglican policies have wrecked the USA. The voters know it and they are not in a good mood this election.

  67. #67 Michelle
    October 9, 2008

    She has my support! But I’m canadian, so I don’t count. :(

  68. #68 Natalie
    October 9, 2008

    I’m not sure I want any part of this game. I’m not part of a “religious group”, and I don’t think that an attack against atheism is “bigotry”.

    Your definition of bigotry appears to be inaccurate. An unreasonable bias doesn’t have to be a bias against religion to be bigotry – consider racism, homophobia, misogyny, and so on. Elizabeth Dole considers atheists dangerous and unpatriotic, for no reason other than we are atheists. That’s pretty much a textbook definition of bigotry.

    It’s bad reasoning, and it’s willfully ignorant, yes, but those are things we argue against rather than crying about. Let’s not be sucked into the special-pleading game.

    Voting against a bigot and/or donating money to their opponent is doing something about rather than crying. And I fail to see any special pleading in this post or the discussion thread.

  69. #69 tsg
    October 9, 2008

    The Dole ads cite endorsements by two atheists, FriendlyAtheist.com and DaylightAtheism.org.

    This is precisely why this “friendly atheism” crap doesn’t work. Bend over backwards to avoid offending the religious and they will expect it and still hate you.

    Take note, concern trolls.

  70. #70 Moopheus
    October 9, 2008

    I suppose I don’t really want to know what Mrs. Dole thinks about Buddhists, either.

  71. #71 funkotron
    October 9, 2008

    Well I donated some to Kay Hagan for this. I will be dropping her an email to let her know why, modeled after someone else’s post here.

  72. #72 raven
    October 9, 2008

    From an Oct. 9 story:

    Gallup finds that 69 percent of Americans believe the economy is the most important issue facing the nation. The second most cited issue, the war in Iraq, is named by only 11 percent of voters.

    The number one issue is the economic disaster. The number two issue is the piles of dead bodies problem. The culture war stuff isn’t even on the list.

    Dole and Palin are flogging a dead horse. It is all amusing to claim the earth is 6,000 years old, smash the windows of cars with Darwin fish, consider ignorance to be a virtue, and babble on about witches, demons, and Moslems. It loses its appeal when you are unemployed, broke, cold, hungry and your kids enlist in the army for economic reasons and get killed for no good reason in a pointless and expensive war.

  73. #73 tsg
    October 9, 2008

    Why should we expect anything other than disparagement from a class of people we so routinely and cavalierly accuse of being delusional and mentally ill?

    The implied, unsupported assertion in this statement is that they wouldn’t disparage us if we behaved differently. History shows this to be false.

    Your concern is noted.

  74. #74 Hap
    October 9, 2008

    I guess Ms. Dole couldn’t manage to read to the “Bill of Rights” part of that Constitution thingy, and she must have been absent in most of the first quarter of her American history course in high school. I guess that makes her qualified to be a server at Denny’s…or a Republican senatorial candidate.

    I think the Republicans are going to have a problem finding candidates occupying the sweet spot of stupidity – it’s tough finding people who are this stupid and relatively sane who are capable of not drooling on themselves. If drug research were going better, I’m sure the Republicans would be helped by improved antidrooling medications, but it’s not, so they’re going to have some problems. On the other hand, they’ve done a pretty good job at not underestimating their voters, though, so maybe the need for a nondrooling candidate is my optimism showing.

    The oft-quoted definition of insanity as “doing the same thing repeatedly while expecting a different result” seems to sum up her policy (and that of Republicans) pretty well. History shows no trace of people using their governments to kill others whose religion they didn’t like, after all, so it couldn’t happen to them.

  75. #75 tsg
    October 9, 2008

    but shouldn’t the title of this post really be, “What are we, sufferers of Hansen’s disease?”

    Um, no, because, well, you said it best:

    it wouldn’t have quite the same pith

    The point is that atheists are being shunned like lepers once were.

  76. #76 davidstvz
    October 9, 2008

    I’m a libertarian leaning centrist actually. Not all A’s are L’s.

  77. #77 karen
    October 9, 2008

    What really angers me about this Dole slime campaign is that it is being waged against voters as well as her opponent. I got one of these offensive fliers in the mail the other day, because my husband who no longer lives here is a registered rethuglican. Dole needs to be thrown unceremoniously out on her ass. I intend to donate to Kay Hagan’s campaign and let Dole’s campaign know I did so and why.

  78. #78 Robert Thille
    October 9, 2008

    Aw crap, there goes another $250, my standard donation to Democrat Senate contenders in tight races…
    Anything else this atheist can do to help you lose Senator Dole?

  79. #79 Questioner
    October 9, 2008

    73: “The implied, unsupported assertion in this statement is that they wouldn’t disparage us if we behaved differently. History shows this to be false.”

    Some surely would in any case, but in my experience (contrary to your “history shows…” whine) the amount and the intensity has grown considerably as your view has grown in popularity and usage. It’s an open question whether honey or vinegar is the better approach, but we have no basis to “poor me” in general about alleged mistreatment.

    “Your concern is noted.”

    I’m not concerned. I don’t care which approach is taken. But if we’re indeed fighting a war, we should expect it to be fought by both sides. That’s why the “poor lepers” comments are so disingenuous and no more appropriate than those related to the alleged war on Christmas and similar idiocy. It’s nonsensical to call people morons, evil or some such and expect them to make nice in return – a knife that cuts nicely both ways in this instance, as it happens.

  80. #80 Hap
    October 9, 2008

    If you’re a Senator (or a candidate who wants to be one) and you show a lack of basic knowledge of your Constitution (and since, as a Senator, knowledge of the Constitution would seem to one of the prerequisites for your job), either you must be stupid (or think that your constituency, or the part of it that would vote for you, is) or you are evil. There doesn’t seem to be another choice. Unless she could explain why atheists aren’t covered by the First Amendment (either the speech or religion portions), there isn’t any content there that would lend one not already lobotomized to give her the benefit of the doubt. Considering that the Republican tactic for enacting unconstitutional policies is to pretend that the Constitution doesn’t actually exist (until they plug judicial candidates), I wouldn’t expect that to happen anytime soon.

  81. #81 tsg
    October 9, 2008

    Some surely would in any case, but in my experience (contrary to your “history shows…” whine) the amount and the intensity has grown considerably as your view has grown in popularity and usage.

    The explanation for that is that the hatred towards atheists that has always been there is now out in the open where it can be exposed for the bigotry it is.

    I’m not concerned. I don’t care which approach is taken. But

    “Everything before the ‘but’ is bullshit.”

    It’s nonsensical to call people morons, evil or some such and expect them to make nice in return

    Nobody does. The difference is some of us realize they aren’t going to be nice simply because we’re atheists regardless of how we act.

    I’m tired of having to think about my answer when asked “what religion are you” and, instead of saying “I’m an atheist”, having to say “I’m not really religious”, bowing my head feigning shame as if it’s a failing. I’m tired of being called “evil” because I don’t believe in a god. I’m tired of our government paying lip service to freedom of religion while violating it at every turn.

    But most of all, I’m tired of assholes like you telling me it’s my fault they hate me so much. So you go sit in the back of the bus, protect the sensibilities of bigots, pretend it’s the “militance” they’re pissed off at and not that we’re atheists, and shut the fuck up.

    I didn’t start this fight, but I’m damned well going to do my best to end it.

    Oh, and your concern is noted.

  82. #82 Brownian, OM
    October 9, 2008

    No need to get all upset, everyone. Let’s just agree to let Matt Nisbet speak with Sen. Mrs. Dole. He’ll show her not all atheists are vile and mean, most likely by praying with her for PZ and Dawkins’ deaths.

  83. #83 Chris
    October 9, 2008

    If you’d like to contribute to Kay Hagan’s campaign, here are two great ways to do it:

    EMILY’s List https://emilyslist.org:443/support/KH_profile/
    ActBlue http://www.actblue.com/entity/fundraisers/18560

    I gave $25 back in August after her campaign made those awful comments. I spend a lot of time in North Carolina, and I’m moving there soon. It’ll be nice to be moving to a potentially blue state!

  84. #84 skepsci
    October 9, 2008

    The side of goodness and light… and possibly elitist bastards.

  85. #85 scooby1967
    October 9, 2008

    I’m guessing that as I am from England I am not allowed to make a donation to Kay Hagan’s campaign.

    Even if I could some out-of-their-tree-Fascist, I mean Republican, would probably interpret it as a part of some cunning plan by the British Secret Service to get some payback for all our tea being chucked into the water. Though really chaps it was a bit rude to do that…

    Every time I read something new about the Hitler/Himmler party, sorry McCain/Palin party, I can’t help but wonder if I have fallen down a rabbit hole and living out some acid trip version of Wonderland!!!

    Not an expert on politics, British or otherwise, but from my very limited knowledge of the American constitution it does seem to me that the “separation of church and state” clause (probably the wrong term there) has likely saved the USA from turning into a new Spanish Inquisition with nuclear weapons.

    If time travel ever gets developed I say the first trip should be for PZ and Professor Dawkins (seems impolite not to use his title, especially as he is married to the glorious Lalla Ward) back to the 18th Century to have a quiet word with the Founding Fathers and get a total ban on religion included.

  86. #86 mal
    October 9, 2008

    This NC voter has been itching to get rid of Dole for years. I knew she was an opportunist the moment she filed for residency in North Carolina, just after Jesse Helms announced his retirement. Good riddance (I hope).

  87. #87 mal
    October 9, 2008

    This NC voter has been itching to get rid of Dole for years. I knew she was an opportunist the moment she filed for residency in North Carolina, just after Jesse Helms announced his retirement. Good riddance (I hope).

  88. #88 Questioner
    October 9, 2008

    “The explanation for that is that the hatred towards atheists that has always been there is now out in the open where it can be exposed for the bigotry it is.”

    Warren Buffet sure faced a lot of hatred during the presidential debate the other night. Jodie Foster can’t get a part, Billy Joel can’t sell a record and Bill Gates can’t earn a living either.

    I grant that there’s way too much stupidity on this subject. And I don’t live in Mississippi. But I have found that on a personal and individual level, a clear majority of people are pretty decent a clear majority of the time. In my world, most people who face hatred on a consistent basis do so because they insist on acting like a-holes.

  89. #89 tsg
    October 9, 2008

    But I have found that on a personal and individual level, a clear majority of people are pretty decent a clear majority of the time. In my world, most people who face hatred on a consistent basis do so because they insist on acting like a-holes.

    I said, “your concern is noted.”

  90. #90 Questioner
    October 9, 2008

    “I said, ‘your concern is noted.’”

    I know. It was stupid then too.

  91. #91 tsg
    October 9, 2008

    It was stupid then too.

    Your concern is noted.

  92. #92 Wowbagger
    October 9, 2008

    Warren Buffet sure faced a lot of hatred during the presidential debate the other night. Jodie Foster can’t get a part, Billy Joel can’t sell a record and Bill Gates can’t earn a living either.

    How many of them were elected?

  93. #93 Eric Atkinson
    October 9, 2008

    scooby1967
    I think you must be smoking some of that tea…

  94. #94 Steven
    October 9, 2008

    Atheists are immune to mycobacterium.

  95. #95 William Miller
    October 9, 2008

    >>The number one issue is the economic disaster.

    I’d have to disagree. I’d say the ecological and energy crisis is worse. If we don’t have an oil-driven collapse, the economy will heal on its own; it always does.

    And why can’t Christians vote for atheists, or atheists for Christians? Shouldn’t their stances on the issues matter more? I can’t even figure out what Obama’s religious beliefs are (since it’s probably politically driven) – and I don’t care. I’m not atheist, but if Obama was, it wouldn’t affect my choice.

  96. #96 Eric Atkinson
    October 9, 2008

    Steven.
    Is it some sort of progressive religious belief that atheists are immune to mycobacterium?

  97. #97 Patricia
    October 9, 2008

    TSG @ 81 – Right the fuck on!

  98. #98 Bawbag
    October 9, 2008

    Didn’t your President regard you as sub-human, check Dawkins “The God Delusion” for actual wording , however I don’t think I am too far away from his implication. For a true perspective on the American electral process, one could do worse than refer to H.S.Thompson’s “The Great Shark Hunt”,ain’t nothing changed except the dates.

  99. #99 Eric Atkinson
    October 9, 2008

    TSG
    You remind me of a joke.

    The bad news is we are all going to hell.

    The good news is there will be no Jehova’s Witness’s there.

  100. #100 efrique
    October 9, 2008

    Looking at the way the poll numbers went after the last time she tried it, frankly I hope she (Dole) keeps it up. Kay Hagan is doing just fine.

    What Dole (and McCain for that matter, with his attacks on Obama) have both badly miscalculated is that the plot is turning off the undecideds. There’s not much point in revving up your base further – you have them already by now – if they hadn’t committed to vote for you by late September, they weren’t going to bother anyway.

    But the undecideds don’t like it. And now the economy is in the toilet, the undecideds want to know what you’re going to do about their 401(k), about jobs, how they’re going to pay for healthcare when their employer goes bust and so on.

    So this kind of ploy is driving undecides away in droves.

    Where it has helped some is fundraising (McCain not so much directly, but McCain’s own campaign isn’t the only Republican organization that spends money, and the dirty tactics do seem to be helping there). But that’s not enough – since, again, you’ve got the base by now, the only people left to covince are undecideds … who are breaking nearly 60-40 for Obama now. Oh, and Obama’s lead is about as big as the proportion of undecideds. Sucks to be GOP.

    So keep it up, Mrs Dole. I want to see you lose *big*.

  101. #101 Azdak
    October 9, 2008

    It’s an open question whether honey or vinegar is the better approach…

    Not really. It’s pretty clear that the answer to the question is “both.”

  102. #102 Ebonmuse
    October 9, 2008

    Thanks for the mention, PZ! I’m frightfully sorry that my vile, radical liberalism was judged to be more frightening than yours by the Dole campaign, when we all know very well who’s the master of cephalopod-themed atheist rage. Possibly it’s because my site has that evil, scary word “atheism” right there in the title?

    And “Daylight” – well, clearly that makes me extra evil. After all, I don’t lurk in the shadows like most atheists, I’m out there bold as brass in the sun, just talking to you on the street in broad daylight as if I were a human being like everyone else! Oh, what is this world coming to when atheists no longer seek refuge from the sun in our underground crypts?

    Seriously, I couldn’t care less if I’m cited in Republican attack ads. That just amuses me, actually. The thing that angers me the most about this is that Dole is attacking not just her opponent but her own constituents. Something like 10% of North Carolinians are non-religious. Clearly, she has no interest in representing them. The sooner she’s out of office, the better, and I hope the Hagan campaign will put my $250 to good use.

  103. #103 Kseniya
    October 10, 2008

    Posted by: Simon Scott | October 9, 2008 2:33 AM

    No shit, Sherlock. Check the batteries in your sarcasm detector.

  104. #104 Loren Petrich
    October 10, 2008

    This makes me wonder where all the “liberal Christians” have run off to. Judging from their remarkable masochism toward the Religious Right, it’s like they are happy to let the Religious Right speak for them without any challenge whatsoever. And happy to let the Religious Right (1) count them as supporters and (2) disparage them as Not True Christians. Yes, happy, because that’s what it looks like to me.

    And for all their wailing that they are not fundies, they don’t seem very willing to demonstrate how they differ from fundies.

  105. #105 Sili
    October 10, 2008

    I got to wondering a bit earlier.

    It looks to me like the Republans have all but folded. The way they’re driving McSame around looks like an elaborate practical joke.

    So …

    Shouldn’t their immediate tactic be to stock the senate with as many bass ackwards reńctionaries as they can? To fight Obama tooth and nail, and most importantly make sure he cannot appoint reasonable people to the SCOTUS?

    Of course, I still fear that they’ll cheat their way in again. Fudging voterregistration, sabotaging votingmachines (why the fuck do you even have those?!!) &c &c.

    But it seems to me that their best bet would be to stack congress to hamper a Democratic president as much as possible.

    So why are they handling Dole so utterly ineptly too?

  106. #106 Ichthyic
    October 10, 2008

    Shouldn’t their immediate tactic be to stock the senate with as many bass ackwards reńctionaries as they can?

    You mean exactly like they did in the House during Newt Gingrich’s heyday and the “contract on america”?

    sounds like yet another despicable sellout of the american people by the rethuglicans to me.

    IOW, you’re probably dead on right.

  107. #107 Walton
    October 11, 2008

    I have to say, I don’t know how I would vote in that election, were I a resident of North Carolina. I normally support conservative candidates because of my free-market libertarian beliefs; but at the same time I’m decidedly unimpressed with Senator Dole’s campaign. I don’t support mixing religious sectarianism with politics, nor mindless prejudice against atheists. Barring extreme cases, personal religious beliefs (or lack thereof) should not be a political issue.

The site is currently under maintenance and will be back shortly. New comments have been disabled during this time, please check back soon.