Atheist News Podcast 026: Thomas Effing Jefferson

athnewspod

“Thomas Effing Jefferson”

Episode twenty-six of the Atheist News Podcast has posted.

Texas keeps threatening to secede from the union, and at this point you wouldn’t catch me trying to talk them out of it. The Texas Board of Education has just voted to remove Thomas Jefferson from the state history curriculum.

Thomas.

F*cking.

Jefferson.

Don’t let the door hit you on the ass on the way out.

If you aren’t an American, you probably already know who Thomas Jefferson is and can skip ahead a bit, but for those of you educated aboard this sinking ship of a country I live in, Thomas Jefferson was a humanist and enlightenment thinker that penned the Declaration of Independence, the Jefferson Bible and served as a US congressman twice, was the second governor of Virginia, was the US Ambassador to France and aided the French Revolution, served as the first Secretary of State under George Washington, the second Vice President of the United States under John Adams and served as the third President of the United States during which time he bought the Louisiana Territory (which INCLUDED PARTS OF NORTHERN TEXAS, you fucking cocksuckers) from France, DOUBLING SIZE OF THE UNITED STATES. After that he founded the University of Virginia, which he designed himself.

And if after all that, if you still doubt he was a patriot, he DIED ON THE FOURTH OF JULY.

So, in honor of one of the most forward-thinking men in history, I have decided to against writing a summary for the Atheist News podcast this week. Rather, I would like to honor one of the greatest testaments to free-thought ever committed to paper: the US Declaration of Independence. I’m not going to post it in its entirety, in fact, I am not going to post anything from the actual Declaration; you can find that easily enough online (and if you haven’t read it, I strongly urge to you to so.) What I am going to do is post a snippet of Jefferson’s first draft of the Declaration that was so radical it was ultimately struck from the final draft by his peers in Congress, despite his protests.

So–without further ado–I give you Thomas Jefferson on King George III and slavery:

He has waged cruel war against human nature itself, violating

it’s most sacred rights of life & liberty in the persons of

a distant people who never offended him, captivating & carrying

them to slavery in another hemisphere, or to incur miserable

death in their transportations thither. This piratical warfare,

the opprobrium of infidel powers, is the warfare of the Christian

king of Great Britain, determined to keep open a market where MEN

should be bought & sold

If you live in Texas and you aren’t a glossy-eyed revisionist historian, I strongly suggest that now is the time to invest yourself heavily in local politics.

Atheist News this week: thisthisthisthisthis and this.

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Brother Richard

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  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/onecockerlady onecockerlady

    First of all – I am an atheist Texan who stands amazed on a regular basis by the machinations of the State Board of Education, never so much as when science and history textbooks are up for renewal. I have many, many problems with the SBOE recommendations for new history curriculum guidelines.

    I also have a problem with extreme rhetoric regardless of which side is pushing it out.

    The removal of Thomas Jefferson from the history curriculum is not complete. He will still be a figure in Ameican history classes. What will be removed is the impact of his thoughts on the creation of the country, which I admit is very troubling.

    Your words make it sound as if he is being completely excised – he isn't. His presence is still there, but students will not have the benefit of analyzing his thoughts and ideas as they do today. This is definitely a real problem and one that needs a bright light shined on it. However, let's not adopt the tactics of the right and overstate the case. It stands on its own merits without any exaggeration needed.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/AndrewHall AndrewHall

    I don't think we want Texas to secede because it would become one of those failed states that harbors and supports religious fanatics…

    Christian ones.

    http://laughinginpurgatory.blogspot.com/

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/davmab111 davmab111

    you little liars do nothing but antagonize…

    and you try to eliminate all the dreams and hopes of humanity…

    but you LOST…

    THE DEATH OF ATH*ISM – SCIENTIFIC PROOF OF GOD

    http://engforum.pravda.ru/showthread.php?t=280780

    Einstein puts the final nail in the coffin of atheism…

    *************************************

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V7vpw4AH8QQ

    *************************************

    atheists deny their own life element…

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/protestlamb protestlamb

    you little liars do nothing but antagonize…

    and you try to eliminate all the dreams and hopes of humanity…

    but you LOST…

    THE DEATH OF ATH*ISM – SCIENTIFIC PROOF OF GOD

    http://engforum.pravda.ru/showthread.php?t=280780

  • dmabu

    DEATH TRAP

    ******************************************
    http://abcnews.go.com/Nightline/FaceOff/
    *****************************************

    THE REAL QUESTION:

    DOES ATHEISM HAVE A FUTURE?

    AND THE ANSWER – NO!

    Atheists

    GET OUT OF MY UNIVERSE…

    you little liars do nothing but antagonize…

    and you try to eliminate all the dreams and hopes of humanity…

    but you LOST…

    THE DEATH OF ATH*ISM – SCIENTIFIC PROOF OF GOD
    http://engforum.pravda.ru/showthread.php?t=280780

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Lary9 Lary9

    Where can I learn in more detail about the Texas SBOE's thinking on this Jefferson business?
    Anyone?
    Aside from that, scary isn't it? This really highlights the often under-emphasized conviction of the Founders that democracy would increasingly require an actively engaged and informed citizenry to keep it. It seems that some citizens are more concerned about being armed with weapons than armed with facts.As I get older, (and perhaps wiser), I become more convinced that as long as religion is held so dear and its extremist fringes stay so strong, no productive debate can ever propel us forward. Having said that, look at the demographics of religious fervor on a map the U.S. and take note of where obstructionism to anything progressive originates loudest. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, the prosecution rests.

  • dmab

    Visit for the BOOBQUAKE:

    dissidentphilosophy.lifediscussion.net/philosophy-f1/the-boobquake-911-t1310.htm

  • LOUP

    Um … yeah. Thomas Jefferson kept slaves. Not saying he should be taken out of textbooks but really should cover all of the fact.

  • http://faithonthemountains.blogspot.com/ Lisa Nelson

    I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that his justice cannot sleep forever. said Thomas, and I agree….I too…tremble for the country who does not realize Gods justice. Heaven help her. And as for so called religious "fanatics"…save us from the other "fanatics" I say. Religion is the best thing that can…happen. However, I do not hail to a religion, but Christ, and that is "relationship" with the Creator God. And am quite thankful for such. I will not be silent, for all that is necessary for evil to prosper, is for "good men and women" to say, or do …nothing.

    • http://www.atheistnexus.org/ David Sensei

      Lisa, you wrote 'I do not hail to a religion'. That's the second time I've come across this strange point of view from a Christian this week. The other one said 'This is not about religion, this is about my belief in God'. Weird!
      I won't ask you to explain this statement. It's perfectly clear. Clear that you have no idea what you are saying.

  • Anna Johnstone

    I suggest you ALL read The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Attwood. That frightening vision of a near future ruled by the religious right is becoming all too possible these days.

    To Lisa Nelson. Religion is quite the opposite of your assertions. It suffocates free thought as any thoughts that are seen to disprove the existence of god (or gods) are summarily dismissed as blasphemy and thereby stifling free speech. More harm has been done in the name of religion than in any other cause.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/TehHawt TehHawt

      An excellent recommendation, thank you.

  • http://managedsite.net Manager

    Where can I learn in more detail about the Texas SBOE's thinking on this Jefferson business?Anyone?Aside from that, scary isn't it? This really highlights the often under-emphasized conviction of the Founders that democracy would increasingly require an actively engaged and informed citizenry to keep it. It seems that some citizens are more concerned about being armed with weapons than armed with facts.As I get older, (and perhaps wiser), I become more convinced that as long as religion is held so dear and its extremist fringes stay so strong, no productive debate can ever propel us forward. Having said that, look at the demographics of religious fervor on a map the U.S. and take note of where obstructionism to anything progressive originates loudest. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, the prosecution rests.
    +1

  • here

    Well said. There will be a day when every man/woman will believe. Although most, unfortunately, will believe to late.

    • Brad1990

      Did you even read Manager’s post? They said (sorry Manager, I’m unaware of your gender and so can’t assign the proper pro-noun) “As I get older, (and perhaps wiser), I become more convinced that as long as religion is held so dear and its extremist fringes stay so strong, no productive debate can ever propel us forward.”

      That’s an argument for not holding religion as dearly as many do. It’s sure as hell not a statement of some wacky belief that one day everyone will hold the same delusions you do.

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/herkblog herkblog

    //violating
    it’s (sic) most sacred rights of life & liberty//

    I'm not sure Mr. Jefferson would have put that apostrophe in there.

    Yes, Jefferson kept slaves. It is said that he was very kind to them but that when he was away others would apply the lash. The concept of abolishing slavery was difficult since it would have meant sharing the wealth with workers to some degree. You know, sort of like it is now, as senior employees are retired early so that younger, lower-paid employees can take their place, and as wages and hours are lowered, sometimes making fewer employees do the work formerly done by more.

    The growing inequity in incomes is very much akin to slavery. After all, people need some kind of job, and there are now millions who may not have a job for decades, thus cheapening the market.

  • David Sensei

    Good to see you're an apostrophe evangelist, Herk, that's something worth believing in, ha ha.

    Mister Jefferson (as they still refer to him at Monticello) not only kept slaves, but wasn't his DNA recently linked to a descendant of one of them? Don't get me wrong, not trying to discredit him, he was simply a 'product of his time'. I think this expression is not a moral cop-out. One has to live in the society one criticizes and tries to improve. Just look at Lincoln's statements on the inherent inferiority of the 'negro race', though he may have made such statements simply for political expediency. . Whether we like it or not, it would have been an extremely visionary and exceptional white man who thought otherwise in those days, although they may have had a humane, moderate view about the slavery issue. As a man of substance and status, Jefferson would have had to 'play the game', as we say.

    The same goes for the equality of women and gays. We've come a long way since then, but it's been due to champions of science and reason and humanism, not to the churches. And Jefferson is very much included in the latter.

    It's interesting to note how the state of Texas came about. Basically they just took it. The Mexicans tried to claim it back but were 'heroically driven out. Then of course their was the problem of the Comanches, the most formidable warriors on the plains. The invention of the repeating rifle was specifically achieved with their annihilation in mind, so I've read. And where would America be without that wonderful boon to civilization.

    Forget the Alamo!!!

  • David Sensei

    Correction – in my last post, Jefferson is included in the FORMER not the LATTER. Huge difference. I also apologize for typing 'their' instead of there at one point – betcha picked that one up too, Herk! Careless, but the first mistake is critical, so sorry about that!

  • Tatiana

    To stand blindfold on a train track with a 80ton freight train speeding at 70mph at you, & deny its existence, makes it no less real or you less dead. To believe the universe as infinitely complex as it is just came into being by accident. Defiance & denial will still end in the same rude awakening. The train is far less terrifying to face then the wrath of a angered God .
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-21HM_YP7E http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uGSH979kbPQ&fehttp://savagespirit.wordpress.com/

    • http://themovingarts.com ekg

      Uhh… if God created us, why is he so angry with us? If I built a robot and then it turned on me, wouldn't that be my fault for executing a faulty design? Seems like God should be angry with himself.

    • Brad1990

      “The train is far less terrifying to face then the wrath of a angered God .”

      I’d rather face an imaginary God than a real freight train any time.

  • Russ

    Had a conversation with a friend up here in Canada as we are trying to figure out what is going on down there in Texas schools. He told me he had asked his parents who came from Germany – How could you have had those stupid prejudices against the Jews? They said they grew up in a culture where the schools and culture reinforced the negative images. He was wondering if some states like Texas are following that route of intolerance – with some of the steps that are being taken.

    People need to fight back about removing a great American open minded thinker from a textbook. Free thinking people and books are important and should not hidden from history. Ayaan Hirsi Ali in her book "Infidel" talks about how having access to books like Nancy Drew played a role in her choice of becoming an independent woman in a culture that subjugates the women. I am sure some local religious figure from her country on hearing that will make sure all the Nancy Drew books are burned so that can't happen again.

    I hope there are enough people down there in Texas that can fight back against this attempt to deny the existence of a great person like Jefferson and what he stood for.

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  • http://www.fxexchangerate.com/ fxgeorges

    haha Thank God i take Ap History and dont have to use one of the school board textbooks

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  • Doc

    I moved to Texas four years ago, and each time I thought of leaving, I realized that meant I couldn't vote against such stupidity. We need more intelligent folks to move TO Texas! And fast, too!

  • http://www.fx-exchange.com/ Bowmanave

    I was going to stay out of your immaturity poll, but Richard won my vote with his comments about Randi’s coming out. Congratulations Richard.
    I think the state has a duty to the prisoners. As soon as the guard made his opinions known, his resolve to perform the duties required of him was called into question. His statement implies he would be likely to ignore the murder of a gay prisoner.
    Keep it up(no pun intended Richard).

  • http://www.smartforextrader.com smart forex trader

    I think i might invest myself much more heavily in local politics.

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  • http://www.colorcodehex.com/ HexColor

    When you understand exactly who is on the school board in Texass it kind of shakes you up a bit. Extreme right wing xians. The no tolerant kind. Each and every one of these school battles we have fought have been very hard won. Much of the time only a compromise can be reached.

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