Can We Overpower the Exclamation Marks?

There are people who ask tough questions, who (at least theoretically) are willing to change their mind if the evidence points the other way, who don’t pretend to know all the answers, who can see both sides of the debate when warranted. I like those people. We need more of those people.

Then, there are those people who are stubborn, who cling to their beliefs no matter what the evidence says otherwise, who think that the person who’s right is the person who’s the loudest. We can do without them.

Why does the wrong side always seem to have the upper hand?

(via nakedpastor)

  • http://yetanotheratheist.net Yet Another Atheist

    We will always be able to overpower the exclamation marks. The exclamation marks were for slavery, but we overpowered them. They were against women’s rights, but they failed. They were against racial equality, but again they were overpowered. The exclamation marks lose on a regular basis, and will continue to do so.

  • Alex

    Maybe whats wrong here is that the question mark symbol needs to be replaced with a light bulb symbol. The question mark symbol which is embraced by UUism can lead to inaction and an anything goes attitude.

  • http://k0ks3nw4i.blogspot.com James

    Alex: then it loses it poetry and symmetry. it’s a brilliant cartoon and should stay that way. unitarians remain a mostly american group, and whatever symbol they embraced holds no significance for the rest of us in the world.

  • Blacksheep

    This is an interesting cartoon, because what I encounter on this forum are overwhelmingly exclaimation points who are not only quite sure of their positions, but completely scornful of others.

  • CanadianNihilist

    really black sheep? Because what I see a lot of is people saying they don’t believe in something, but at the same time can’t be 100% sure and it.
    Sounds like the opposite of what you suggest.

    I am overwhelmingly anti-religions exclamation point, but that’s because I’ve seen every religious exclamation point claim ever made debunked in several different ways.

  • http://agnosticism2010.blogspot.com/ nomad

    Can we overcome the exclamation clubs? NO!!!!!!!!!!!!
    (just kidding)
    And YAA, I must have dozed off for moment. When did we overcome racial inequality? Damn! Pop the champagne! I’m gonna celebrate!

  • Thegoodman

    @Nomad…racial inequality?

    While I do agree with you that the situation is not yet perfect, comparing the racial plight of today compared to the plight of minorities (more specifically, blacks) during the civil rights movement is disingenuous at best. The social battle may be well under way, but the legal battle has been won.

  • http://religiouscomics.net Jeff P

    Why do the exclamation marks have the upper hand? Because there are more of them. Also because their attitudes are backed up by “scripture” that is interpreted by other exclamation points. That gives them the conviction of “being right” or “doing God’s work”. Even though Jesus may have had some sympathy for the concept of the dangers of the “tyranny of the majority”, the Christian Majority doesn’t seem to pay attention to any such sentiments. What do you thing would happen if the exclamation points succeeded in “taking the country back” and made the constitution more in line with “God’s law”?

  • http://brickwindow.wordpress.com Brick Window

    I have to second what Alex says about the Unitarians, but not about changing the cartoon.

    Alex, you might want to read this.

    Everyone else please ignore the flagrant blog pimping.

  • MaryD

    I think Blacksheep has it right.

    The question marks will never be leaders and the exclamation marks don’t all exclaim the same thing.

    I don’t know there is a god but then again I don’t know there isn’t. Should I sit on the fence and be a question mark or should I exclaim that so far I haven’t found a single shred of evidence for a god?

  • Blacksheep

    really black sheep? Because what I see a lot of is people saying they don’t believe in something, but at the same time can’t be 100% sure and it.
    Sounds like the opposite of what you suggest.

    Yes, really – i do feel that way CanadianNihilist. Using myself as an example, if you were to go back and look at my posts / opinions / etc, and the nature of the posts in disagreement to them, it looks an awful lot like the cartoon – a bunch of angry exclaimation points!

  • CanadianNihilist

    I find there are not enough angry exclamation points here.
    To each his own.

  • Josephus

    I find angry exclamation points have a perfectly justifiable use.

    They are to be used when what your opponent says is so far out of line with observable reality that the only acceptable response is, “WHAT?!?!

  • Blacksheep

    I find there are not enough angry exclamation points here.
    To each his own.

    I could certainly use a few more in my camp!

    I keep waiting for some benchwarmers to get into the game. :)

  • Nakor

    As a writer (not professional) seeing all those !’s in a group made me wince. ._.

  • http://annainca.blogspot.com Anna

    Blacksheep,

    This is an interesting cartoon, because what I encounter on this forum are overwhelmingly exclaimation points who are not only quite sure of their positions, but completely scornful of others.

    Leaving aside the issue of scorn, you have made several remarks like this before. You perpetually seem upset that atheists express confidence in our position. You never responded to my comments here and here, so I remain puzzled why you seem to feel that atheists should beat around the bush (on an atheist blog, of all places) when I’m quite sure you do not hold your fellow Christians to the same standard. In a Christian environment, do you, your pastor, and your fellow congregants refrain from expressing your certainty of the existence of the biblical deity?

  • Jeigh

    But….when someone asks ‘tough questions’ about something like 9/11, because he is a natural skeptic (kinda the reason he is non-religious in the first place)…he is told he is just as crazy as someone who believes in Jesus, homeopathy, alien abductions, or Obama not being an American.

    My experience has been that Atheists are often a crowd of exclamation points themselves.

  • Nordog

    Why does the wrong side always seem to have the upper hand?

    Here’s a question mark for you…

    Does the wrong side necessarily have to be the other side?

  • Michelle

    It also comes down to what is accepted as ‘argument’. Too often we see and hear people who are supposed to be debating, but are actually just spouting and repeating predetermined talking points. No one bothers to respond to what the other person is saying unless it is to shout over them. We have allowed this to be the balanced and fair way we deal with important questions
    instead of forcing each side to deal with the actual arguments (when they are put forward) of the other side.

  • http://k0ks3nw4i.blogspot.com James

    Jeigh, that some is not as crazy as a believer in Jesus, homeopathy, alien abductions, or Obama being an alien just because he ask “tough questions”. That person is crazy because he or she continues parroting those same stupid questions after they have been answered repeatedly by real skeptics. That someone has a belief system backed by zero credible evidence. That’s why that someone is crazy, not because of the hard questions that person asks.

  • http://agnosticism2010.blogspot.com/ nomad

    @Thegoodman “comparing the racial plight of today compared to the plight of minorities (more specifically, blacks) during the civil rights movement is disingenuous at best.”
    Not that this is what I was doing, but I’m sure you would know about such things. A simple look at prison statistics (or any comparative statistics for that matter) will demonstrate that we are a long way from overcoming racial inequality. Sure, things have improved, but not as much as non-black people seem to think.

    “The legal battle has been won”
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA-HA-HA-HA…


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