Month: October 2013
In just over one year the U.S. Depatment of Homeland Security has purchased over two billion (that’s right, 2,000,000,000 ) rounds of ammunition. In the interest of perspective the wars in the Middle East have required approximately 70 million rounds per year. That means that in just over one year the Feds have purchased nearly 3 times the of ammunition needed to fight two wars over the course of a decade – and they’re using our money! Tax dollars are being spent to keep ammo off American store shelves in an effort to disarm the American populous.
You see, they can’t disarm us legislatively, so they’re stealing our money and buying directly from the manufacturers. As if this isn’t outrageous enough, our fearless leaders have purchased 2,700 MRAP vehicles (light armored-tanks) as well.
At first, these expenditures seem fairly reasonable, right? Let’s face it, America is a war-like nation which is currently at publicized-war in two countries and fighting an untold number of proxy wars. Unfortunately, these purchases never left the country. Instead the tanks and ammo have been distributed to local SWAT Teams throughout our states.
This raises the question, “why is an agency responsible for defending U.S. soil stocking up on wartime materials and using them to militarize local police?”
To my knowledge, government officials have not addressed this. In fact, mainstream news corporations have hardly uttered a word about it as well. Everyone in a position responsible for reporting the meaning of this activity to American populations has acted as if nothing is going on at all.
In the past people have said to me that they, themselves, don’t break the law, therefore they have nothing to fear from SWAT teams. They think that police are there friends because they obey the police. They think that the government is working for them and that it has honor because they, themselves, feel emotional when they hear the “Star-Spangled Banner” and think about “the troops” on the Fourth of July. These people have not dealt with the police before; they have yet to be criminalized. It takes one law to take a “God-fearing, taxpaying, law abiding citizen” and completely transform them into an unrighteous, unproductive, law breaking menace to society. And when this happens to these people, of course, they’ll need to worry about SWAT teams, indeed.
The rate of swat team raids for warrant serving has increased exponentially over the last decade. Some figures estimate that approximately 200 of these raids occur every day in America. The following video is just one example of what happens when a citizen is criminalized.
The man in the video below was accused by his neighbors of selling marijuana. And so the warrant for his kidnapping was signed by one of his peers (some “judge”), and a swat team was deployed to his home to execute said warrant. In the video you can see the first five minutes of the penalty for selling random bits of arbitrary vegetation in our free United States.
This is the kidnapping of an American. But worse, it is costumed, self righteous goons betraying property rights, shamelessly and brutally torturing and slowly killing a man’s dog, terrorizing his wife and 7-year old child, and loving every minute of their sociopathic dominance over the government’s subjects.
It’s a shame we have become convinced that it should be difficult for ourselves to own guns. It’s an even bigger shame that we’ve given tremendous amounts of firepower to creepy, power-hungry sociopaths. And we’ve allowed all of this in order to grant these gangsters the obligation and the right to initiate violent force against whomever is being criminalized at the moment.
The actions of the neighbors who called the armed posse are disgusting. The actions of the armed posse are disgusting. The actions of the judge who authorized these actions are disgusting; what arrogance must exist in the corrupt mind of a man who sits in judgment over the trade of plants. Perhaps the most grotesque actions in this incredibly sad story, though, are those of the American people whose complacency, insidious in nature, has directly led to the possibility of this situation.
If you are a law-abiding citizen, just you wait until you become the criminal; it will happen. Maybe you will be late registering your vehicle, or you will refuse to pay your hard earned money when you are unfairly ticketed by a cop who’s having a bad day; you may become a criminal for any number of reasons.
Two things are certain:
The government is not working for you, and the police are not your friends.
~ In response to the overabundance of mainstream-styled bloviating I witnessed masquerading as free thought on social media following the last presidential campaign I wrote the following:
November 6th, 2012
“Alright, everybody, its time I gave it to you straight. You don’t matter. Your opinions don’t matter. Your vote doesn’t matter. All the posts in the world, full of jeering and negativity and encouragement and exclamations, don’t matter.
Government, in general, is chalked full of devious agendas, sinister ploys, calculated plots and many more creepy-adjective/ominous-noun pairings. [Citizens] are to government authorities what lab-mice are to scientists. We are run through incalculable experimental conditions to include, but not limited to: extreme changes in social and cultural dynamics, legislative controls on the part of cities, townships, counties, states, and the federal government, economic modifications, and international relation/foreign policy adjustments. Meanwhile, the authorities observe us and make sure we continue producing the results they want.
The absurdity of the candidate concept, and campaign and election processes is unsurpassed. Wildly rich, and undisclosed, corporations bribe politicians (through the legal means of “lobbying”) and then pay off the most popular media outlets to send the most irrelevant, immature, and sometimes downright stupid messages feasible into the homes, cars and [mobile devices] of the American people. Our elected officials accept this, because in their eyes we are such moronic buffoons that they think we’ll actually listen to and watch them and interpret their hysterical messages as truth, or something. Unfortunately, most people are as ignorant as they believe us to be. Even the people who buck the trend and are genuinely skeptical of the candidates and their policies so rarely think critically of the entire system that the insights of those who do are usually discarded without consideration.
As a result of being unacquainted with facts, and allowing ourselves to be misdirected by crooked, biased mediums we have lost sight of the goal. We have lost our integrity as a nation. Today Americans are entirely void of any focus or perspective that might be helpful in making an educated decision regarding which candidate would be most efficient holding a position that maintains absolute control of our lives and environment.
Folks, do you really want a billionaire who wears magic underwear and thinks he’ll become God of his own planet when he dies making decisions for you to live by? Or would you rather have the inexperienced guy, the ex-pothead with a streak of charisma and a reputation for biting off more than he can chew?
On the theme of debated subjects…
Taxes? During the 2012 campaign, what tax plan was communicated to you clearly enough that you can honestly agree whole-heartedly with it? It wasn’t; they weren’t.
Tax loopholes? Which loopholes in particular does either candidate support, and how do they work exactly? You don’t know; virtually, nobody knows. I assert that tax attorneys, and corporate CEO types are about the only ones who understand these things, and even they have to spend hours tediously combing over the fine print in order to fully understand them .
Debt to China? How much Chinese debt have our politicians accrued? In what form is this debt? What interest rate is placed on this debt? When does it have to be paid back? Why was/is this considered a viable option? Who makes the decision to accrue this debt? Do you know? I bet you don’t. I don’t. Not too many people do.
Let’s talk about social issues. Are you certain about the stance either [Obama, or Romney] really takes regarding abortion, marriage equality, separation of church and state, recreational drug use, capital punishment, gun-control, social program spending, etc? Do you know, because you heard them clearly state what their stances are, or do you assume because of their party affiliations and your interpretation of their facades? What specific programs will be cut? What programs will be created? How will this alleviate the pressures of national debt, and how quickly? People just don’t have enough relevant information to make a sound decision. And, to be fair, no politician has a sound grasp on the requisite knowledge to do their job the way they promise to.
At the end of the day, regardless of what you think you know, you are being manipulated within your environment by laws, regulations, local policies and processed messages. The ever present threat of potential “consequences for your actions” to be enforced by government organizations is extended during election time to include consequences for inaction. Every election year leftist media outlets aim humongous rhetoric-campaigns at young people (who tend to be more liberal) in an effort to convince them to vote. This circus is so transparent, but the kids seem to enjoy being a part of something; if only they knew they’re building a road to their own debt-slavery.
Even if nobody voted today, there would still be a President. The entire acid-trip barrage of Le Cirque-like nonsense that makes up the presidential race is designed to misdirect and misinform the population causing us to think there is an enormous problem at hand, and that WE are the key to solving it. Why? In order to boost your confidence as a voting member of society, a patriot even! Besides, if your candidate wins you will more likely support him after the election out of stubbornness and pride.
How conniving! How dishonest!
The world’s most genius marketers have been running disingenuous, wretched election-campaigns for decades convincing subjects to the state (us) of the existence of a fallacious problem (four years of THIS guy! or four years of THAT guy!?), presenting us with solutions (THIS guy thinks this! THAT guy thinks that!), and ultimately commanding us to act now (VOTE!!!).
In reality, the problems facing our country and its masses are so immeasurably complicated it would be impossible for any individual to gain a reasonable sense of what is needed to fix all of them, and it is exhausting to think about. So, we tend to allow campaign messages, designed for dumbasses, to satisfy our curiosity just enough that we justify our decisions on how to vote.
Possibly the very most laughable part of the whole show, though, is how effective this control system maintenance has proven to be. Those who dug in their heels for Obama are feeling joyous. Why? What are they expecting from him? Nobody in the world has the technical knowledge, vast perspective, ultimate wisdom, and absolute devotion to humble morality essential to stanchly perform the duties of the POTUS. Certainly, Obama doesn’t. And those who voted for Romney are feeling discouraged and spiteful and are determined to see Obama fail. They’re so politically frustrated they’ll stay coursing through the veins of the government propaganda machines in earnest with hopes of witnessing Obama’s inevitable fall from grace.
So we are all engaged in some sort of supportive, or unsupportive role (regarding government) within our great society, and the politicos got us feeling as though we matter like cogs in the mightiest of wheels. Mission accomplished, politicos and your staff!
Most of us are all fools, lab-mice, morons, buffoons and peasants, and we’re ultimately supporting our own subservience! We’re aiding the government in maintaining control of our lives!
Restore your dignity; Don’t vote.”
On the subject of gun-control, it should be understood that no such thing exists. Were our population to be disarmed there’d have to be costumed thugs with guns walking the streets and initiating force against others in an effort to disarm them. Then, those thugs would be the only ones with guns. This is not gun-control; this is propping up one side of the playing-field. This is livestock-control. Certainly the frightening statistics are out there, the ominous rhetoric is thick, the politicos are posturing at their pulpits, and the concept of gun-control has been given a nice, big, shiny wrapper and has been set in front of us. Don’t let the wrapper fool you.
It should also be understood that the majority of Americans are led by their noses these days regarding how to think about important issues. The government deviously supports their agendas by bringing specifically selected issues to the forefront of our communities through corrupted media. Remember, we get the story last; we aren’t getting the full story. It seems such common knowledge today that the news is overwhelmed with bias, and that the stories are completely molded by the time they reach us in an effort to push the agendas of those in power. It’s as if everyone already knows they can’t trust these sources, but there aren’t any honest options so we listen to compromised material anyway.
I know that people don’t generally go about their daily routines toting pistols and stashing rifles in the cabs of their vehicles. I’d even venture to guess that if most folks were to be mugged/raped/beaten/etc they would probably not succumb to paranoia and begin doing so. However, people really ought to have the option regardless of whether they’ve been assaulted before or not.
Here is a mental exercise that illustrates this point. Start by thinking about your loved ones, or one person who really matters to you in particular and picture them in all their splendor.
Now that your loved ones are on your mind, imagine watching an intruder enter your home and seeing your loved ones being sexually assaulted in front of you and then being executed while screaming for help; in this scenario you have been overpowered and restrained and have no control, because you didn’t care enough about your children, wife, friends, etc to arm yourself against this intruder. In all honesty it takes a few hundred bucks initially, and then the price of ammo and 1 hour of your time per month spent maintaining the ability to effectively use your firearm in order to significantly bolster your home defense.
Okay, that was pretty dramatic. So, now imagine its just little ol’ you sitting in your small business that you opened and built up over the years…or maybe you’re on your way to the bank and you’re just starting up a small business, and you’re carrying a large sum of money to deposit. That money is your livelihood. That is what you have worked hard for up to this point in your life; it’s what you’ll use for food, rent, clothes, etc. Now imagine an armed criminal forcing you to hand it to them…this is not right. In case there is any question in your mind about it, put yourself in the shoes of a father or mother or grandparent or anyone who has worked terrifically hard over the their lifetime to provide for their family, but are now forced to provide nothing because they are unable to defend themselves sufficiently.
Still too dramatic? Couldn’t happen to you? Doesn’t happen enough for you to worry about it? …Delusional about the world we live in?
School shootings should raise awareness that high value for human life is not being effectively passed on to the newest generations. It should raise questions about the unlevel playing field we live in as unarmed citizens. Instead, fools have somehow been convinced that these massacres occur, because citizens are too well armed and too well trained; these nutty sheep want to disarm the population.
Regardless of the school shootings, movie-theater blowouts, and other situations in which a single armed citizen could have prevented mass losses of life, there are other equally legitimate reasons why American citizens not only have the right to, but, in fact, ought to arm themselves. It’s the government, folks!
It’s Big Brother, Uncle Sam, the DoD, IRS, DEA, and their cohorts. I recently heard John Stuart stating that, because the U.S. is not currently on the brink of military takeover, Americans needn’t worry about being forcibly disarmed. The perspective that Stuart isn’t including in his quippy commentary is that of the long-run. When America’s citizens are no longer allowed to stay armed sufficiently, when they no longer maintain their ability to defend their communities from their rulers’ standing military forces, they stop being citizens and become subjects. They are thereby subject to whatever actions their government takes toward them. (One example of a disarmed nation was Nazi Germany) Of course, I don’t think Obama is going to turn the military against the U.S. public; he has only 3 years left in office. However, legislation passed today coupled with legislation passed in the future will determine when this does occur.
In the mean time the American public is the most heavily armed public in the world toting over 300,000,000 privately owned guns! Potentially, though, in thirty or forty years, when our kids are grown and firearms have been illegal for decades rendering the public defenseless and ignorant of how to use them, I foresee an issue.
The public has already allowed themselves to be outgunned in most parts of the country. Fully automatic firearms are already off limits. Because of this, the people’s only current leverage over their government is strength in numbers (and their ability to justify their existence to those in power by producing tax revenue).
This is not to suggest that everyone should join a militia or stockpile an arsenal of weapons and ammo. I’m simply suggesting folks think for themselves and decide whether they want the ability to defend themselves, their loved ones, their property, and their communities from all enemies foreign and domestic if it were to come down to it. Of course the likelihood of this being necessary hardly exists while the people are armed.
This is not about party-platforms. It is about an even playing field. The two political branches of government (executive and legislative) maintain a two-party system to keep the public distracted and divided, so their subjects won’t unite around any particular train of thought and cast out those in power. In my opinion, Tommy J. and his fellow founders would be appalled at our current owners’ strategies toward managing their tax-livestock.
Stay armed, stay aware, stay sharp, and don’t let the wrapper fool you.
We all know that it’s not okay for children to hit each other. But, does this apply in grown-up life. Let’s examine…
Were you to have a pencil and I a dollar, and were you to want a dollar more than your pencil and I to want a pencil more than my dollar we could agree to trade. I could walk away happier with a new pencil, and you could walk away happier with a dollar. It isn’t okay for either of us to bang the other on the head and take their property. For the sake of argument, let’s assume that we engage in peaceful negotiation and walk away having transacted the pencil-for-a-dollar exchange .
If, as you walk away with your dollar, a thug were to approach you, put a gun to your head and proclaim his authority to steal a portion of your dollar you would call it theft. Even if this thug were to promise to give a portion of the stolen money to good causes (after paying himself, of course), it is theft. I am talking about the government stealing your money and calling it “taxation”.
I’ve heard it argued that there exists a social contract by which members of society are bound to provide for one another. But, alas, under close examination no such contract exists. In order for a contract to exist two parties must communicate an exchange of goods and/or services under no threat of force, and each party must agree to the terms of the contract. As stated earlier, this is not the case under the government’s so-called “social contract”. People do not agree to give their money to the government as a means to provide for the common good, because they are not given a choice. They are told to give their money to the government in exchange for not being imprisoned or murdered. Complying with a bully is not the same as agreeing to a contract. The immoral root of taxation is arguably why people dislike paying taxes fundamentally, though they have been conditioned to think that they dislike paying taxes because they’re selfish by nature (original sin doctrine).
In fact, people have been conditioned to think many things which are not true. For instance, paying taxes is not an accurate description of what people do. If you were to hand over the requested portion of your dollar to the armed thug in the storyline I described earlier, you would not be paying him anything. You would be complying with an armed robber.
If you were to resist the armed thug, let’s say he would then arrest you and take you to jail. Of course, you would more accurately describe yourself as having been shackled, kidnapped, sexually violated and imprisoned.
Let’s say you were to resist kidnapping, and the robber were to use necessary force to subjugate you, or perhaps even be obligated to use deadly force against you. You would probably be more precise in saying you’d been beaten or murdered. I could give countless examples beyond this, but I think you’re starting to get the point. The government justifies its immorality through soft language. The people are being fffffooled. Don’t get me wrong; I’m not saying you won’t first be penalized with fines for not handing over significant portions of your earnings – you will. I’m saying that the IRS will demand your money, then they’ll demand more of your money, and finally they’ll call up some costumed sociopaths to initiate force against you.
If someone feels I’m being extreme in my descriptions I suggest that they stop paying their taxes; I think they’ll quickly come to terms with the precision of my imagery.
So what is “mine”? What is “selfish”? Indeed, they are one in the same. Selfishness is one of the most basic instincts built into mammals to include human beings. Very early on children show a strong sense of “mine”. Just imagine taking a toy or ice cream cone away from a toddler. Indubitably, parents, teachers, coaches and the like expel this instinct from children on the grounds that it is “not nice” and indoctrinate them with a sense of sharing-as-duty or even virtue. But, this notion of what belongs to us is so essential and inherent within us that it really ought to be given some consideration before writing it off as a corrupt or non-virtuous trait.
The “mine” concept is innate rather than learned in order to provide us the desire to obtain necessities and to trigger our protective instincts when our property is threatened. Selfishness is beyond virtue; it is a rudimentary mental tool necessary for survival. Conceptually, this is akin to self-ownership, responsibility for one’s self, etc. It is instinct that drives us away from complacency and toward productivity in our own interest. This is a superb mental feature.
This doesn’t mean that sharing superfluous resources is unreasonable; in fact, sharing can be a wonderful act of cooperation, or charity and should be celebrated! But it must be understood that individuals hold the power to decide how much of their resources are superfluous, and when and where to distribute them – if they feel the desire to distribute them at all.
To force a person to give up the fruits of their productivity is immoral. After all, if a person’s possessions are acquired as a result of their own productivity and private-trade, then to force that person to hand over their possessions is to force them to work. This, which was once called slavery is now called a “social contract”.
Some people argue that were there no government to steal our money there would be no civil rights, no roads, no fire services, police forces, or all the things that government provides. This is a tremendous breach of logic and a stupefying attempt to justify the initiation of force. It must be understood that the government doesn’t produce anything therefore it has nothing to give to its subjects; rather, governments steal money from productive tax-livestock (you and me) and redistributes it to its agencies who then trickle the stolen money through the systems paying every bureaucrat on the way down until finally providing a service to a special interest group in order to bolster support for politicians.
Not only does the government not provide anything, it hinders social progress. To better examine this let’s pose some of the aforementioned statements in questions.
1) If there were no government who’d allow women to have equality?
I must first point out that women’s lack of equality in the world until less than 100 years ago was a direct result of governments. Governments dictate who is allowed to do what. Until the 1920’s governments dictated that women were lesser than their male counterparts. This changed due to a shift in societal attitudes. Had the government not existed to hold women back, society could have been able to move forward in their acceptance of women as equals far sooner. It was the state whose law was enforced on society through the threat of violence that is responsible.
This applies, of course, to all civil rights. While slavery was eventually abolished by a stroke of the proverbial government quill, it was also legally instituted with a previous stroke of that same utensil.
In fact, segregation was also enforced by law. When considering that the success of private business is directly proportional to the amount of customers partaking in their services, it stands to reason that excluding a large generic group of potential patrons from commerce would not be a viable option for business-owners for long. Segregation was legislated and enforced on the private market under the threat of violence; had it been a matter of private choice, it could have been considered unfeasible and been done away with through public ostracism much more quickly than we eventually saw through political discourse.
2) Who will build the roads?!
This is possibly the most preposterous question to ask, but so many people do ask. Well, first of all, I suppose private companies will build the roads without the government. There are certainly plenty of pavers and graders out there in the private market to build roads. And private companies will be in the business of owning roads. They’ll charge tolls for using their roads, and people will pay gladly.
At first, it must sound outrageous to suggest that people would have to pay a toll every time they use a road; I understand, but that is simply because people cannot afford to pay twice. It’s really difficult to understand this concept of constantly paying private-road tolls without considering what it would be like to keep your money in a world without governmental theft (taxation)!
Today, nearly half of an average worker’s wages are sucked up into the ever-present vacuum of government institutions in order to pay for things that probably would not be funded were the government not to hold its subjects at gunpoint. You see, if you weren’t being robbed to pay for walls around the country’s borders, or to pay for others’ medical treatments, or to pay for other people’s children to go to school, you probably wouldn’t. And this is fine. This is good, even! You shouldn’t pay for someone else’s responsibilities. You have your own responsibilities as a result of your plight in life and your decisions. Take care of your self.
If you kept what you earned, you’d be able to pay tolls on private roads. You’d be able to pay a privately operated fire department to protect you from fire stuff. Or perhaps you’d pay an insurance company who could pay a privately owned fire department. You could pay for private security in your neighborhood. You could pay for whatever services you wanted, and you could NOT pay for services that you don’t think are necessary for your well-being. It could be your choice. You could work to produce for your self, and you could keep what you earn, in a truly free society.
3) If you don’t like it you can leave!!
This is usually one of the last attempts to argue the statist viewpoint. Statists point to the notion that if you don’t like living under a constant threat of being robbed and forced to pay for others’ responsibilities “Well, then you can just move to an ISLAND!!!”
This is, without ambiguity, a complete breakdown of cognitive ability. Going back to our situation with the armed robber, if the robber repeatedly steals your money at gun-point and says to you, “If you don’t like the way I run my block, well, then you can just throw away all that you’ve worked for thus far and move to a new block!” that really isn’t a reasonable suggestion. It’s difficult not to laugh at the absurdity of this statement. Just imagine Paul Revere riding the opposite direction from town and shouting, “Oh no, guys! They won’t let us freely trade, so we have to pack up and move to the woods and fend for oursellllvvvves!” This statement is as astonishingly dimwitted as it is emotionally vomited out of desperation.
Here’s the kicker. It doesn’t matter. These statist arguments don’t actually hold a candle. All of these arguments are for effect. They’re scare tactics. Think about what is being proposed by these arguments. They imply that without the government, its theft, its threats, etc, we’ll all live in a world where women are mistreated, minorities are left by the wayside, in which there will be NO ROADS, and buildings and houses will burn to the ground in a heap of regretful, unpatriotic ash. It will be a world full of murderers and selfish narcissists. No one will care for the poor. The underprivileged children won’t be educated. It will be… …AAAnnaarrrchyyy!
In truth, nobody knows what it would be like in a truly free society. I, and many others, assert rulers aren’t needed to set the rules. Instead, public ostracism would be hard at work. Public ostracism can currently be seen working every day as pop culture dictates what is acceptable.
For example, when I was growing up it was cool to call people faggots, but if I were to do this today I’d be virtually (and possibly literally) flogged by society. Societal norms do shift, and with those shifts come direction on which behaviors are acceptable. Without the brutality of government social molding would be far more effective as norms would be shifted more freely without the extra steps needed to persuade elderly bigots who hold power through the threat of violence to make changes.
Free society is a ways off, but we can all start living more freely today by resisting the urge to search for handouts, taking responsibility for the negative consequences of our decisions and actions, and feeling good about reaping rewards for our good choices. Society owes nothing to us, nor do we owe anything to society. Reject regulation and taxation; instead move toward cooperation and liberty.
*This article may be offensive, but it’s worth the risk of offending if a single person is steered away from a life wasted chasing sky-ghosts of millennia past. Please feel free to share this perspective with loved ones who may be lost.
There is no reason to believe anything for which there is no proof. Even if something is thought to be true for a long time, even by lots and lots of people. For example, it turns out that the sun is not the center of the universe, Earth is round, hurricanes and tornados are the result of atmospheric disturbances, and recently the Catholic Church proclaimed that limbo doesn’t exist…so the unsaved babies are all in heaven already!! Hooray for the babies.
If the only so-called evidence for something a person believes is that lots of people raised in a mysterious fog of folklore have been deluded enough to be convinced of it, those “beliefs” are illegitimate. In the case of Christianity, people have been convinced, mostly through indoctrination of the youth, that an invisible trio of supernatural, cosmic, zombie-like aliens are responsible for everything positive and neutral in our lives, and that another, bad, alien is responsible for everything unfortunate in the world except some things which are the fault of the zombie-trio who tend to “work in mysterious ways”. Personally, I tend to steer clear of and question every opinion and decision made by those ppl – being that they’re in a constant state of slight hallucination at least.
Religion is a mental poison. It negatively affects everyone it touches. Whether a religion causes guilt or shame, or compels physical violence and verbal abuse, or just slightly affects a single decision, the effects are unnecessary and damaging. Imagine if you were told that peanut butter was guacamole as a youngster. Imagine going your whole life thinking that peanut butter was guacamole and vice versa. This would probably impact your decisions a few times, though, whether negatively or positively is speculative. So how much does being indoctrinated with religious teachings impact a person’s opinions and decisions? It stands to reason that a misunderstanding of physics, delusions of ethnocentricity and telekinetic correspondence with aliens from a different dimension, and subconsciously seeing virtue in subservience are all things that probably have a fairly significant amount of pull on the decision making strings within the heads of religious folk.
Religion is completely intolerant, although it’s almost always disguised as loving, caring, supportive, and all about spreading joy and peace, etc. Under that botoxed façade religion has nothing to do with any of these things.
I’m often offered a valid point when voicing these truths: as long as the “beliefs” of others cause no effects in my life, then I shouldn’t care. Of course, this is where the problem arises.
Public opinion shapes the rules by which we live. When the public is duped into rooting their individual values in fictional, morally flawed tales from the days when “WingDings” was a readily legible font on stone tablets, public opinion becomes vastly skewed toward the illogical.
This is why slavery was once lawful, why gays are not allowed to make the same public commitment to each other by law as their hetero counterparts, why 3000 people were crushed and burned to death on 9/11, why an army of Catholics and Protestants committed the Natzi holocaust, why hundreds of millions of Americans have been incarcerated in the war on drugs, etc, etc, etc. Self-righteous dicks everywhere just can’t help themselves from initiating violence in order to curb non-violent behaviors in there fellow man simply because they, themselves, aren’t “into” those behaviors. Overwhelming popular opinion heavily influenced by religious values caused the afore mentioned list of wretched violations to life and property (and uncountable others) to be executed more smoothly than if they’d have been carried out in a free-thinking, rational, secular society. Of course this has not been tried, so we can’t know for sure, but I think it’s worth some thought.
To the argument which suggests atheists who argue against religion are simply on the opposite side of the spectrum from proselytizing evangelists: Helping to normalize rationality and logic and belief in evidentiary claims is not the same as attempting to spread the indoctrination of societies into a highly gullible and easily moldable base of superstitious, complacent fools.
Hierarchy is not pyramidal; it is horizontal. In modern society, sociopaths drawn to power over their fellow humans are allowed to reign over populations because of horizontal ostracism waged between their subjects. Religion, which is false to begin with, is used as a tool with which people are conditioned into complacency and distractingly pitted against one another on the basis of unethical codes. This makes people susceptible to unwarranted trust, and unwarranted forgiveness. It dulls the senses, and when 90% of our peers allow this ridiculous storyline to serve as the foundation of their morality I find it irresponsible not to combat that line of thought when given the opportunity. It most certainly does affect my life, and yours, and your parents, and your future children, and my future children, and everybody else.
Lastly, when I was involved in the church (for 10 years) I remember thinking that non-belief sounded more reasonable than what I was so adamantly favoring at the time. Honestly, it teed me off when people spoke about how pleasant life is without religion, because I was living nearly “sin-free” under all sorts of constraints and restrictions, and they were having a better time than I was in general, so I understand the frustrations of those on the other side of the truth whole heartedly. Then again, I’m full of wonder rather than answers these days, and that curiosity and lack of introspective pressures is exquisitely freeing. Even though it is a sin punishable by eternal damnation and hellfire, I highly suggest throwing off the manacles of religion for a couple weeks (or forever) in the interest of seeing what living for yourself has to offer.