Creationist: The School Shooting Happened Because We Took God Out of Our Schools

The shooting happened hours ago, we know relatively little about a motive (as if it matters) or the background of the shooter, but that won’t stop Creationist Eric Hovind from speculating about a possible reason this happened:

How despicable can you get…

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • Mike D

    And the shitstorm begins….

  • Hamid Afra

    what kind of asshole sadistic god would send a shooter to kill 17 people  , Screw your God if he exists!

  • Dan Marshall

    A Hovind being a scumbag? INCONCEIVABLE! 

  • Gus Snarp

    Despicable is definitely the right word, though I’m sure I could think of a few more.

  • Salford3lad

    If I may use an English expression……………………………….knobhead.  Unbeliveable.

  • Gordon Duffy

    Actually the shooter grew up in a universe without god. We all did.

  • Salford3lad

    Typical creationist cretin,  unbelieveable.

  • Matthew Baker

    Bryan Fischer Made the exact same claim. I guess any opportunity to dig up that old chestnut.

  • LesterBallard

    He’s a fucking Christian. He can get a lot more despicable than that. Remember, his god routinely slaughtered or ordered the slaughter of children, and Hovind and the rest have no fucking problem with it. Fuck them all.

  • RobMcCune


    Really??? This is the unquestioned automatic response of ghoulish vultures.

  • Liokae

    Here’s a thought.  Maybe *we* could take at least a short time to keep just the victims in mind before we start in on the hate of people turning it into politics?

  • Ida Know

    Unbelievable, that a rabid xian wingnut would try to use this tragedy to push his agenda.

    No wait, what’s the other word… oh yeah, got it… Predictable.

  • Todd

    Of course Bryan Fischer takes it even further:

  • Sven2547

    You see his other tweet?  “According to evolution this was not wrong”, he says.  What a ghoulish lowlife.

  • nakedanthropologist

    Ken Hovind can go fuck himself.  What an utterly vile and despicable excuse for a hominid. 

  • Kelly J Youngblood


  • Melissa Scott Bland

    So what your saying is GOD killed 18 children because he was not in school …. Sick and twisted

  • Vini Marques

    Because only the godless commit atrocities… or something?

  • Albert Yome

    pathetic and revolting. This bitch has no respect for the victims, just looking to advance his absurd delusions.

  • Cincinatheist

    I’m pretty good at multitasking. I can feel sympathy for the people affected by this tragedy AND think about how Eric Hovind is a fucking dickbag all at the same time. The human brain is pretty remarkable in that way.

  • Richard Wade

    It wouldn’t surprise me if Hovind and his ilk have pre-written scathing condemnations of atheists, Muslims, church-state separatists, evolution teachers, and anybody else who isn’t a mental clone of them for any horrific event that happens, and they’ll just plug the rants in, filling in the time, place, and details.

    In 3, 2, 1,… Cue Dinesh D’Souza’s blaming atheists for this, or asking where were the atheists when this happened, like he did before the blood was dry after the Virginia Tech shootings.

  • Michael

    According to evolution this was absolutely wrong. Our species emerged as the strongest because we care about each other and do what we can to stop these things happenning.

  • Kevin_Of_Bangor

    This was posted over at

    The daughter of some of our closest friends is among those killed- I’m in absolute shock, stunned, angry. They were to visit us next weekend for the holidays; I have Christmas presents, wrapped, with her name written on a label. My son has been her friend since they were too small to walk- how do I tell him? How much do I tell him? How do I prevent him from being terrified to go to school on Monday morning?

  • JoshEvolved

    I wonder what he’ll say if some unhinged person shoots up a Christian school. I hope that never happens, but that doesn’t change my curiosity about what vitriol will escape his cretinous mouth.

  • Rich Wilson

    Like all those mass murderers in other countries that don’t have prayer in school, like, um, someone help me out here.  I know other countries that don’t have prayer in school have mass shootings, but I’m trying to remember the last one.  The mall?  Oh no, that was OR.  The movie  theater?  No, that was CO.

  • viaten

    It’s always a godless something.  If it weren’t the school, it’d be something else and so on.

  • Walrus_Callihan

    Hovind’s read the story of the 10th plague in Exodus, he should know that killing children is right up god’s alley. 

  • Ch81602

    No surprise. I just did an article about creationists playing the blame game when it comes to incidents like this.
    No surprise whatsoever

  • Drhoward53

    What a douche nozzle!

  • jdm8

    I see that as a virtual double standard, whether or not it is intended, like we shouldn’t admonish people for making the original politically charged response to a tragedy.

  • Guest

    You are evil, lester.

  • Blacksheep

    We all grew up in a universe created by God

  • Bubba Tarandfeathered

    There are no consequences for questioning the will of Gawd, when Gawd doesn’t exist.

  • GG

    WHAT. THE. FUCK?????? What an asshole!

  • GG

     Prove it.

  • Bubba Tarandfeathered

     I say, send the truancy officer to Gawd’s House and have him arrested for delinquency.

  • Matt Eggler

    I LOVE how he jumps to this conclusion when there essentially no information available. What kind of moron makes definitive claims without evidence? Oh, thats rich, he’s a fundamentalist Christian; it is his modus operandi. What will he do if he discovers the shooter was deeply devoted Christian who attended church twice a day?

    What if the shooter went to a church school? What if the shooter stopped by his church and prayed for guidance just before the shooting? What will Hovind say then? Will he apologize or acknowledge the shooter’s Christianity? My bet is that if any facts surface that bear any resemblance to any of the hypothetical situations I mentioned Hovind and his ilk and their followers will ignore it and continue with their talking points. That is unless the facts are too embarrassing, then they will shut up and pretend nothing ever happened. 

  • Thin-ice

    Right now I wish God were real. Because I’d spit in his face.

  • Bubba Tarandfeathered

     and now the burden of proof is on you.

  • Rich Wilson

    Do you think the reason God didn’t stop this shooting is because we don’t allow the school to lead our kids in prayer?

  • Thomas L. McDonald

     “… says the guy using a nobody’s Tweet to score cheap rhetorical points against Christians hours after a tragedy, and all the people in the comboxes lining up to kick Christians around. Meanwhile, most Christians on Twitter and elsewhere are expressing their horror and quietly offering their prayers in the wake of this horrible tragedy. Funny how you manage to find the one ignorant creep to damn us all. And by “funny” I mean “totally predictable.” 

  • Baal

     Um, the issue is with Hovind.  This backlash is part of reminding the Hovinds out there that his unmerited insult is beyond the pale. 

  • Helanna

    “Well, he obviously wasn’t a real Christian.”

    It’s *amazing* how many problems that line solves for Christians.

  • Justinsguillory

    you are an idiot 

  • RobMcCune

    Actually there are two, and their relatively influential in their respective circles, hardly nobodies.

    Have you been consistent in condemning those you think are exploiting this tragedy, or have you only shown up here to decry mean old atheists?

  • Randomfactor

     And correct, too.

  • Blank
  • Randomfactor

     At the very least the shooter grew up in a society saturated with Christianity, right down to the inscriptions on the coins.

  • Katrina Fernandez

    Tom, don’t even give our fellow patheos writer the pageviews. Leave him to his portal of hateful atheists. 

  • RobMcCune

    He’s looking for a fight.

    Just flag it.

  • Matt Eggler

    I wonder what they think these other Christians are? Artificial Christians chok full of chemicals and preservatives? GMC’s (genetically modified Christians)?

  • Gone Apostate

    How despicable indeed. Fisher refuses to be outdone though. …..If only there were teachers brave enough to defy the law and pray in these schools for protection.

  • Rich Wilson

    LOL I would LOVE to see some page view stats comparison between your blog and Hemant’s :-) 

  • RobMcCune

    How is a fundie protestant being a shameless asshole getting all these catholics to shoot the god damn messenger?

  • Rich Wilson

    Maybe when Rick Warren chimes in.

  • NoCrossNoCrescent

    Not the first asshole to blame this on secularism.

  • Cecelia Baines

    To Hovind - 

    You are the lowest form of scum imaginable. You sully us all with your horrors and ignorance. And for you to say THIS…..on so many levels it displays for all to see your scumminess and failure to be a decent human being.

    If anyone deserves pancreatic cancer, it surely is someone like you. 

  • Derek Walsh

    Why do they blame the First Amendment and not the Second?

  • Neil

    Of course taking god out of school causes massacres. That’s exactly what happened in Europe, Japan etc…. isn’t it?

  • C’mon Buddy

    If you have any hard evidence, now would be a great time to show us all. The bible does not count because you cannot say that a book that claims the world is flat and Australia does not exist to be in any way factual.

  • Drakk

     It’s the same guy who compares atheism to holocaust denialism, so my bet is on the latter.

  • Baby_Raptor

    Really? Prayers to the deity that allowed it to happen? And you think this is the proper response?

    Not, maybe, calling out the assholes who make it worse and then finally working on gun control?

    We don’t need to damn you. You do it just fine yourself. 

  • Baby_Raptor

    So you agree with the man, then. Because we could only be “hateful” for calling out his rhetoric if you didn’t. 

    That probably says all we need to know about you. Your god murders innocent children because people aren’t sucking up to him enough, and *we’re* the hateful ones. 

  • RobMcCune

    Figures, the whole comment is probably an exercise in projection.

  • Erslev

    Wonder if Hovin can tell me why there are not school shotings in Europe. It can’t be schools with out god 

  • Hillary

    It is beyond ridiculous the pettiness of people. There was just a tragedy and instead of just supporting these people, we are all putting blame on everyone’s Gods, lack therefor of, and anything that creates difference between us. It is dumb. That man was probably just a messed up psychopath, his motives, whatever they might be do not matter.Tragedies should bring us together to care for others, not tear us apart.

  • cathouseumbrella

    I have no idea what school the shooter “grew up in” so I really have no way of know if god was in it or not.

  • Blacksheep

    Rich, you don’t know me well but you know me better than that.

    I do not believe that God works that way.

    This is far too tragic a thing to opine on anyway. All we can do is keep the families in our thoughts and prayers.

  • Blacksheep

    Am I to plead my case before Bubba Tarandfeathered? :)

  • Carmelita Spats

     Why flag? Just because he used the F-word? The rest of the statement is
    absolutely correct. Hovind CAN and DOES get more despicable than the
    mere braying of Christian apologetics… Hovind is a professional liar
    for Jesus and an apologist for bible-based genocide…I can generate a daisy-chain
    of F-words to describe Hovind and his lackeys: Fanatics,
    Fundamentalists, Frauds and Fowl, yes, Fowl and Foul devotees who engage in semantic Flummery. Flag my F-words.

  • Blacksheep

    Not the time or place GG, sorry.

  • Blacksheep

    C’mon buddy, that’s the standard, tired old line. Do you really want to get into a circular argument on faith – something that transcends what we can see and touch? There are fundamental differences in the way that people of faith view the world and the way that atheists view the world. It will probably always be that way.

  • Guest

    So the guy who said, “Fuck them all” is not the guy looking for a fight?

    You guys have a strange sense of civility.

  • RobMcCune

    I was talking about Guest, LesterBallard is fine.

  • Blacksheep

    There’s probably a good sermon in that sentiment. When God became flesh, in Christ, people did, quite literally spit in God’s face. And his reaction was “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do.” No lightning, no thunderbolts.

  • Fehndrix

    Do it…

  • Fehndrix

    Do it.  We’re waiting…

  • Fehndrix

    We’re waiting…

  • Blacksheep

    They will, i think he had an automatic weapon.

  • RobMcCune

    I said nothing about civility, fuck people who want to exploit dead children to promote petty theocracy. Fuck. Them. All.

    Quit baiting people.

  • Glasofruix

      most Christians on Twitter and elsewhere are expressing their horror and quietly offering their prayers

    In short, they are doing absolutely NOTHING, it’s fucking disgusting…

  • Atheist for Peace

    I am sorry that Eric Hovind grew up in a school with God. Perhaps if he hadn’t he’d be able to show a little more common decency and empathy. For all the grandiose talk about the glory of god and the protection of morals, this just shows what a morally corrupt person he really is.

  • Blacksheep

    Re read my posts, F.

    I actually meant what I wrote.

  • Guest

    You’re a child having a tantrum.

  • Rod Fleming

     Matt, like his dad, he is the kind of moron who sees money in other people’s suffering. These people are utterly repulsive.

  • RobMcCune

    Says the person offended by naughty words.

  • Apathostic


  • Stev84

    But apparently it was the time and place for some idiotic drive by comment by you

  • Stev84

     But those aren’t god’s chosen nations

  • Apathostic

    Instead of “quietly praying” to nothing in particular for no appreciable affect, why don’t you try lobbying your government reps in order to change your assinine constitution? Try removing the tools that allow these psycopaths the opportunity to kill children. But that may be too hard. It would mean actually standing up and doing something. So much easier for Xtians and others of your ilk to engage in the second most useless activity known to man (I say second mostuseless, because praying is so useless it can’t manage to make itself first most useless). And yes, it is “totally predictable”. How can it not be?

  • Aspieguy

     You mean like atheists live in reality,  and christians live in a fantasy world filled with invisible friends, monsters, and superpowers? As long as people like you continue to believe these things, then, yes, it will always be this way.

  • Godlesspanther

    I have no idea what school that shooter went to either. And I would bet that Eric Hovind has no more idea than we do. 

  • Dave Littler

    No, just eternal, unending torment, an infinite amount worse and more horrible than any lightning or thunderbolts.

  • Godlesspanther

    Uh, I wonder if you can help me out. I read the OP several times and I was just not able to find where it says that this represents all Christians. Can you help me with that? I was not able to find anything of the sort in the comments either. 

    Is that because you are a much better reader than I am? 

    Or could it be something else? 

  • Coyotenose

     Now you’re trolling.

    Jesus must be so proud of your refusal to stand up for him in any way that isn’t a smug – and false – claim to wisdom.

  • Coyotenose


    This is far too tragic a thing to opine on anyway. All we can do is keep the families in our thoughts and prayers.

    If that’s the best you can think of to do, I feel very sorry for you.

    Also, pretending to be above discussing the matter is dishonest, and again, smug. Your faux humility must be pleasing to the Lord, as well as your implicit desire that the status quo not be upset even when it involves mass murder.

  • Jordan Olsen

    I emailed all my representatives. 

    Eventually, people will stop talking about the tragedy in CT. 
    Eventually, the grief will start to fade to the background, if only a little. 
    Eventually, the memorials will be cleared away.  
    Eventually, the cries of the left will start to falter.
    Eventually, the fears of hunters losing their guns will outweigh the fears of another automatic weapon destroying a community.
    Eventually things will go back to normal. 
    And eventually, without action, our hearts will be broken again.

    Politicizing a tragedy is one thing; learning from it is quite another. We haven’t been learning from the tragedies of the past. It’s time for Democrats and Republicans to come together and stand up to Big Ammo and their lobbyists. 

    Now is the time to take action.

    Best Regards,

    Jordan Olsen
    JD Candidate – Univ. of North Dakota

  • Coyotenose

     Pretending that it’s a difference of perception is an argument that has been well-refuted here and anywhere else you can find atheist and secularist commentary.

    Pretending to have secret magic knowledge is arrogant. Jesus must love you for it.

  • Coyotenose

    Children get murdered, and your response is to troll and insult people who criticize those who try to profit off of it.

    So much for your morality and maturity, you sick turd.

  • Coyotenose

     Yep, just like with Mithra.

    And Horus.

    And the other couple of dozen gods that story was cribbed from.

  • wmdkitty

    Jesus, even MY “fantasy world filled with invisible friends” makes more sense than his does. (And it’s far older than his.)

    I believe that the gods — whether or not they had a paw in the creation of, well, ALL of this — aren’t too terribly interested in what humans (or any other species) are up to, and certainly aren’t going to intervene in a given situation just because you ask/beg/plead/scream for their help.

    We have brains and knowledge, we have hands with opposable thumbs, we have hearts that feel for those who are hurting — LET’S USE THEM TO MAKE THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE, REGARDLESS OF BELIEFS.

  • Plasticpony256

    Your nom de plume suggests you would have a witty retort loaded and ready to fire off, so let’s see it.

  • Aspieguy

     I agree. People can agree to do good and attempt to make this world better. Unfortunately, we are surrounded by lunatic christians who are more interested in pushing their beliefs onto everyone else.

  • Coyotenose

     No, they won’t. They are people like Hovind, who are just find and dandy with there being more firearms than people in the U.S., who see no issue with the number of gun-related deaths being comparable to automobile-related deaths, who don’t grasp the significance of the fact that homes with guns are no more secure than those without while at the same time experiencing more accidental – and intentional – injuries and deaths.

  • Coyotenose

     Hmm… so that means that Hovind’s argument is that not receiving a secular public school education has made God into a petty, cruel, passive-aggressive sociopath. Interesting.

  • Jordan Olsen
  • Plasticpony256

    So like the suffering we have to put up with istening to christians blaming everyone but themselves for the world problems.

  • Coyotenose

    Nobody on this side is blaming this on a god or lack of gods. We’re pointing out the moral bankruptcy of those who are claiming it has to do with such things and insulting the victims. Stop trying to create a false equivalence.

  • Clsales206

    It was a catholic School. 

  • Coyotenose

     I thought Israel was his chosen. Isn’t that why it’s so peaceful there?

  • Coyotenose

     He’s a prominent Christian leader. You’re either very ignorant of the subject and too incompetent to recognize that ignorance, or you’re being intentionally deceitful to… what was the phrase… score cheap rhetorical points hours after a tragedy.

    Enjoy your hypocrisy and lies. I’m sure Jesus will forgive you.

  • Brian Scott

    Y’know, for reference, Hemant didn’t say anything about Christians. He was railing specifically against Hovind.

  • michael both

    Keeping the families in your thoughts and prayers is the most selfish thing you can do – pretending to do something whilst actually doing nothing at all, just to make yourself feel better and to keep worried thoughts that maybe your god doesn’t exist after all out of your head.

  • Matt Eggler

    Indeed. Very hard to argue with that Rod.

  • Coyotenose

     Good job supporting the guy trying to profit off of murder, you nasty little sack of filth.

  • matt pierpoint

    Wow. Why does it matter? Is belief or non-belief bringing back dead children? Eric is obviously not only socially retarded, but lacks any kind of courtesy towards those people who are currently at a loss. However, there are bigger issues at the moment, and using these emotional moments as a platform for my atheism, or your deity is hardly the most productive way to produce a more tolerant and loving society. 

  • SDG

    Who is Erik Hovind, other than a random soul on Twitter with fewer than 3K followers? You can find ANYTHING you want being said by SOMEONE on Twitter. Shit people say on Twitter is not news, and not worth a thinking person’s commentary. To treat a tweet as worthy of commentary is an act of breathtaking intellectual laziness. 

  • Rich Wilson

    To answer my own rhetorical

  • Rich Wilson

    I do.  Which is why I was moderately surprised you decided to light the match in the first place.

  • RobMcCune

    Have you tried to find out who eric hovind is? Hint: Google is your friend. Before you talk about intellectual laziness you might want to look in the mirror.

  • phantomreader42

    “Guest”, you and your fellow death cultists found a pile of bleeding corpses of murdered children, and the first and only response that your feeble minds could conceive was to hack them to bits and use the severed limbs to bludgeon anyone who questions your vile cult.  And you’re too much of a coward to even use a pseudonym while doing it!  You are garbage.  Fuck off.  You don’t deserve civility, you have never show it for an instant.  Lying is not civil, you piece of shit. 

  • cipher

    And you’re a moron with nothing of value to contribute.

  • cipher

    HUGE “Like”.

  • cipher

    Uh huh. That’s why Sweden has so many serial killings. Oh, wait…

    The Hovinds illustrate perfectly the need for mandatory intelligence and sanity testing as a prerequisite for reproduction.

  • Blacksheep

    You can read my posts, above. I actually meant what I said.

  • Blacksheep

    I believe it’s what the families want, at least right now. After a tragedy, you need to mourn for a while, no?
    After that, hopefully it will shed light on gun control, mental illness, etc.

    Not sure why you consider keeping people in thoughts and prayers to be selfish.

  • Blacksheep

    I’ve had scores of discussions here, and I’ll have many more. I’m not obligated to speak on command because someone demands I do so.

    I’m not above it at all- i’m not in the mood to discuss it – thats all.

  • Blacksheep

    I put a comment down in response to another’s comment. His comment was definitive, so was mine.

    On a day that 20 kids died, Gordon wrote, “ACTUALLY the shooter grew up in a universe without God. We all did.”

  • Blacksheep

    I’m very practical, I can keep people in my thoughts and prayers, and still work like crazy to do exactly what you said, to make the world a better place. And I’m happy to do it alongside Christians or atheists.

  • Blacksheep

    Thats’s my honest conclusion. In my opinion there is definitely a difference in perception. And maybe perception is not the right word, but there is clearly a difference.

    It’s not pretending, it’s a sincere belief. And it’s certainly not secret, the Bible is still a best seller!

  • Blacksheep

    Reality is more than we can see and touch. It includes what we can feel, experience, and realize. That’s my opinion.

  • SeekerLancer

    I knew these kind of comments were coming but it doesn’t make them any less despicable.

  • Blacksheep

    Not sure what you mean about the status quo and mass murder… Unless there was a point made that religion was somehow to blame?

  • Bad_homonym

    Correct. And he represents the default position. The null hypothesis. You posit something truly remarkable, and refuse to comment? After all this thread is in response to an unfounded claim that is supposed to be an endictment against not enough religion being in school. Your answer is a prop to his claim, an you offer the same avoidance that idiot Hovind always does! You are a troll. Nothing more than a typical cyber-bully. You have no interest in an actual discourse! Good thing you have your get out of jail free card. The rest of us have to answer for ourselves in the here and now. I hope you quit praying and start doing! Since I found the truth I actually care, not in lip service, for those around me. I hope you can find real empathy and take action to help those you can. Remember, nothing fails like prayer!

  • thedesserted

    Even though what we feel can be just the illusion of the imagination….

    Geez, its hard to free those bound by the chains they rely on…

  • Cecelia Baines

    Fuck you! Seri0usly, FUCK YOU! You come here, put this shit out and then try to play Simon Pious….GO THE FUCK AWAY YOU CALLOUS AND RETARDED MOTHERFUCKER@wk633:disqus I have a friend who’s niece was killed in this shooting. I just found out about it.


  • Cecelia Baines


  • Brian Scott

    You may be sincere, but Coyotonese has a valid argument. To take your statement below, you state that reality includes what we can feel, experience and realize. No atheist disputes this. The dispute is the epistemic conclusion that the generative solutions to certain experiences and phenomena are ineffable. This is an argument about distinguishing hypotheses, and the reason atheism reels against faith is because faith does not have methodological rigor to actually whittle down generative models, when they’re even being applied to that discipline at all.

  • JohnnieCanuck

    “No lightning, no thunderbolts.”

    That would be because that Father your fantasy Jesus god was fantasizing about is a fantasy god.

    We know the cause of lightning now and we didn’t learn it by finding it in a holy book. Neither Zeus, Odin, Thor or YWYH control lightning.

    Your god didn’t allow kids to be killed because he was pissed off at some adults. He doesn’t get the blame, because he doesn’t exist.

    Shamen have been trying to scare people with natural and man-made disasters since the job description was first invented. Hovind is just one of the latest members of the ‘profession’.

  • Rich Wilson

    Oh goody, WBC can’t pass up an opportunity

  • Billy

    Put the Lord back in schools! What’s so hard about that? It’s no coincidence that the peaceful playground days we once knew are gone! And the school system will keep going down. It’s what happens when God is removed! We reap what we sew, the Bible says so… no exception, no matter what arrogant, egotistic age we live in!
    God bless those families! 

  • Brian Scott

    It is very much possible to be a coincidence. As someone else mentioned earlier, the Bath massacre took place during a time of significantly higher religiosity.

    Furthermore, while events such as shootings are tragic and unusual, violent crime as a whole has actually been going down over the last few years. This signifies to me, at least, that the cause of this tragedy is probably significantly removed from general societal causes, or is at most correlated to outlier epiphenomena of current societal issues.

  • Rich Wilson

    Actually, crime rates have been dropping pretty steadily for the last 20 years.  To what do you attribute that decline?

  • Sharon Hypatiia

    Cecelia, I am so sorry for you, for her and her family.

  • Sharon Hypatiia

     Considering that evolutionary fitness is defined as producing offspring who survive to have their own offspring, killing a room full of children would be very wrong indeed.

  • Drakk

     Er…you do?

  • Drakk

    Aaaand I just read your other comment. I’m terribly sorry for what I just said.

  • Bubba Tarandfeathered

    Tell that to the parents of the Amish children who were killed in their school a few years back. In their opinion Gawd was most certainly in that school.

    But I suspect though you are too much of a pussy to handle that level of love, obedience and fear that they have for their gawd.

    You’re more of a jack christian compared to them.

  • Drakk

     >… says the guy using a nobody’s Tweet to score cheap rhetorical points against Christians hours after a tragedy

    What do you call the tweet itself, then, if not an attempt to score “cheap rhetorical points” against atheists?

    >Meanwhile, most Christians on Twitter and elsewhere are expressing their
    horror and quietly offering their prayers in the wake of this horrible

    So they’re doing nothing of any help or value whatsoever. You know, in a way, I’ve got more respect for the likes of Hovind than all those others. Fucked in the head as he may be, at least he’s (mis)identified what he thinks is a root cause of the problem and started attacking it. The fact that he’s gone after the wrong thing completely is a function of him being an asshole and a Christian.

    Meanwhile, “most Christians” are doing just enough to stop them feeling guilty for doing nothing, despite, well, doing nothing. Also, spewing the fact that you’re praying over a social network is hardly “quiet”.

  • Drakk

     Surely “shoot the messenger” is SOP for catholics. Fits right in with their response to the pedophile priests.

  • Bubba Tarandfeathered

     I like how the guy, alias “Blacksheep,” is trying to bait me because of my internet handle, as if my handle defines my level of intelligence or something. I am also known as Plasticpony256, I wonder does that also say something about my character Mr. Blacksheep?

    Let’s see “black sheep” According to Wikipedia 

    In the English language, black sheep is an idiom used to describe an odd or disreputable member of a group

    In 18th and 19th century England, the black color of the sheep was seen as the mark of the devil.

  • Lambre777

    You are not a victim so stop being dramatic for sympathy purposes. Be a friendly atheist not a tool.

  • RobMcCune

    I was expecting this tone troll shit from our fundie regulars, not a gang of catholics. It’s predictable if they get mad over, say cover ups by their leaders, or the facts of reproduction.

  • Mew Mew

     The one from the bible.  Remember, that God is the same one who killed all of the first born because one man wouldn’t believe in him and do as he was told.  He’s the same God that destroyed entire cities for their sexual behavior and turned a woman into salt for daring to look a certain direction.  It’s why I don’t believe in God.  If he exists he’s one sick little monkey.

  • Bubba Tarandfeathered

    Delusional people always “mean” what they say, because they wholeheartedly believe in their delusion. That rigorous belief blinds their cognitive ability to see the delusion as unreal and creates with-in ones self a willingness to suspend disbelief.

    It really saddens me to think that you cannot see past your delusion. You have been infected by a horrible meme. Sure you are functional as many alcoholics are functional too. Religion and alcoholism are both diseases that can be cured, if one is willing to accept that their position could be false.


    Since the Religion Meme is widely accepted as a true state of being, the delusional individual is justified in his false position. The Religion Meme functions uniquely in that it can supersede higher cognitive abilities. Sadly your ego will never allow doubt to enter into your thoughts, about your position. At this point you are to ill to see anything other than the delusion.

    There are no “truths” to be found in Atheism, only Freedom of the Mind and Body.

    Stop fearing Freedom.

  • Brian Scott

    OK, I’m gonna tone-troll here for a minute because I think this is a poor communication tool: can we quit with the “religion is a disease” line of rhetoric? It’s not good faith and it’s so similar to the “atheists are deceivers” line of argumentation that I think it is illegitimate of us to use it.

  • FSM

    You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.;)

  • Bubba Tarandfeathered

    Then would you be so kind to offer an alternative view point?

    I have experience first hand the the communicability of religious indoctrination even after holding onto an atheistic position for years. I was once a client at a religious based drug and alcohol recovery rehab. One of the counselors there proposed to me Pascals Wager after I came to him expressing doubts about my atheism.  As a requirement of continuing my recovery I was tasked to attend religious services bi-weekly and found that, due to my damaged self esteem, I was easily accepting the religious indoctrination being fed to me. The loving and sharing community is deceptively seductive, but near the moment of my departure, with only a shred of reason left in me, I saw their true colors. I was instantly healed from the delusional state that I had fallen into. Later I came to realize that I had been infected by the “spirit” of religiosity. This, albeit a subjective experience, was proof enough to me that religion is a disease much the same as the drug addiction I was recovering from. 

    So tell me my friend, dissuade my ever growing (subjective) opinion, that religion is not a horribly contagious disease, one that has dire consequences upon the whole of humanity.

  • Glasofruix

    I don’t think that your definition of discussion fits the one the whole world is familiar with.

  • Glasofruix

    His only proof is that if something exists, skyfairy must have made it.

  • Bubba Tarandfeathered

      I’d like to share a revelation that I’ve had during my time here. It
    came to me when I tried to classify your religion, and I realized that christians are not actually religious. Every mammal on this planet
    instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with the surrounding
    environment; but you christians do not. Instead you multiply, and multiply,
    until every resourceful mind is consumed. The only way for you to survive is to
    spread to another mind. There is another organism on this planet that
    follows the same pattern… a virus. Religion is a disease, a
    cancer on this planet, you are a plague, and we Atheists are the cure.

  • RobertoTheChi

    Oh but it’s the time and place to bring up your imaginary friend?

  • Brian Scott

    OK a) animals overpopulate all the time. They don’t necessarily naturally find an equilibrium until reality forces them to by starvation and disease. Often, what prevents overpopulation in animal populations is predation. So the incidence of rapid spread and destruction does not necessarily signify an apt comparison to disease.

    b) in response to your previous question, we are infected all the time with memes. The contagion of ideas is not a particularly good reason to describe a particular idea as a “disease”. Good ideas that have spread like wildfire like “wash your hands after going to the washroom” have been “infecting” people for a while.

    While it is good to be mindful of how anti-rational memes can exploit weaknesses in human cognition, the bad consequences of such memes is what we should be focused on. And I don’t agree that all religious memes, despite being anti-rational, have bad consequences.

  • njew84

    It’s funny how you all call yourself “free thinkers” yet you have to see evidence to believe in something.. I’m pretty sure believing in God takes a little more “free thinking” than needing materialistic evidence for something to be true…

    As for this shooting… I would be willing to bet this guy had a poor upbringing, maybe a fatherless home or maybe an abusive childhood. A child that grows up in a home with a good Christian father would most likely not commit a crime like this, I’m not talking about a father that goes to church every Sunday and puts money in the offering tray once a week and then goes home and sits down on the couch with a beer and let’s his kids go out and run around the neighborhood or sit in their room alone.. I’m talking about a real Christian father, who lives like a Christian, who is involved in his children’s life who loves his family as well as other people.

    Now that’s not to say that you have to be a Christian to be a good father but I would also be willing to bet the number of these people who commit these crimes either had no father, a father who calls himself a Christian but doesn’t live it or a father who doesn’t believe in God and is not “good without God” most likely because he also had a poor upbringing as well.. Just sayin’

  • Blacksheep

    Believe it or not, I understand and respect your position, as I believe it’s authentic. I understand every word you just wrote. Some of my closest friends, and some of the smartest people I know, are atheists. As for me, I deeply believe that God exists, and in the Gospel of Jesus. 

  • Blacksheep

    I like the metaphysical way in which you speak. I think of Christianity in similar terms, albeit reversed. 

  • Blacksheep


  • Blacksheep

    Actually you can go on line and see the schedule for the prayer vigils and church services, along with requests that we pray for the families (by those close to them). So no, I don’t KNOW what they want, but I think I’m pretty close to knowing. Your comment to me is incredibly rude and not in line with the reality of the victims and what THEY want, which for better or worse IS NOT what you think they should want. You need to take things for face value and not get enraged when someone has faith.

  • Blacksheep

    Bad, I said “right now”. If you read my post you’ll see that I have had scores of conversation and years of discourse on FA, I’m not trying to avoid discourse, believe me. But I’m certainly not going to get into a conversation with someone who demands a response as if I somehow am obligated to do so. I did one simple thing: I made an absolute statement in response to an absolute statement. In the wake of the tragedy, I didn’t think it fair to make such a nihilistic statement as: “There is no God” when it’s they very time that many (not all) of the people affected are turning to their faith.

  • Blacksheep

    Christians shouldn’t be doing that:

    “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?”

  • Brian Teal

    I replied to his post with this: “@erichovind I’m not happy about the shooter at all, but I am guessing that schools WITH GOD teach about tax evasion? Same thing…”

  • RebeccaSparks
  • Tracy Bradley

    Exactly. Here in Canada we also don’t have massive storms because of gay marriage… etc etc. It’s like these ppl don’t realize other countries exist – or maybe they think their god only cares about the US?

  • Tracy Bradley

    Billy, why does this sort of thing not happen in other countries who do not have prayer in schools? Why in the US, but not in Canada? Also – why does it sometimes happen in religious schools? Seriously curious as to your answer.

  • Brandywine III

     This post so so ignorant I don’t even know what to do with myself.

  • Brandywine III

     You just brought up Jesus in an internet discussion. WHo’s the troll now? lol

  • SDG

    Heh. Fair enough, RobMcCune, with the caveat that “shit convicts tweet from prison” doesn’t make a much more impressive subject for significant discussion. Apparently he’s a guy with a fake degree from a diploma mill who started a shabby theme park and sold a lot of merchandise. The world is replete with moderately successful but marginal idiots whose views are not worth discussing, unless you’re just looking to to score cheap points. 

  • daniel

    I have to say something. I read this today:
    “‘Evil visited this community today,’ says Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy”

    I think statements like this one, while well meaning and, I have no doubt, heartfelt and sincere, are a big part of the reason we never get anywhere, policy-wise, when these kinds of nightmares occur. Evil did not visit Newtown, CT yesterday. Evil is not a thing. Yesterday, a mentally ill young man with easy access to a perverse amount of firepower committed an act that surprised few who claim to know him.

    When we talk about “Evil” we support the infantile notion that there is absolute good and it’s direct opposite working in the world. We give abstractions like good and evil agency. It allows people to be affected by yesterday’s events while remaining insulated from a call to action. Can’t do much to fight Evil. Except get on the side of Good….logic which can lead to all sorts of disagreeable outcomes from a humanist perspective.

    We don’t need to fight Evil, or even acknowledge Evil as an actor. What we need is to get it into our collective head that we must proactively address mental illness diagnosis and treatment – especially in younger people – and finally talk like adults about gun laws. I don’t have I don’t pretend to have a plan illustrating how we go about doing that. I can, however, suggest a place to start: Recognize where the agency comes from. Evil did nothing yesterday. But until we admit that, we will have done nothing to change all our tomorrows.

  • Daniel Nye

     It HAS to be a troll, right? I mean, I think it would require the invention of negative IQ othewise… so we could root it and get imaginary IQ :-/

  • esra

    hah hah, satire. I hope..

  • Unbiased Observer

    Not trying to be a troll, but you’re all idiots. Both sides of this debate (and yes, I’ve read every single comment above my own) You’re all so busy pushing your own agenda that all you’re doing is mud-slinging and character assassination. Christians, you can’t prove God exists, and that’s fine. You don’t need to, but on the other hand, if you can’t prove it, you have no right to push it. All you can do is present your ideas, and hold true to your beliefs, as Jesus taught. Love the sinner. 

    Likewise, Atheists  you can’t prove God doesn’t exist. So therefore, being scientists, you can’t actually rule God out. That actually makes you more closed-minded than the Christians you claim to “pity for their delusions” and whatnot. That makes you look like you have no moral character whatsoever. To assault somebody for what they choose to believe when you have no proof, in any way shape or form, to prove that it is incorrect. 

    Maybe God is bigger than that. Maybe God created physics and chemistry and science so that we as humans could grow as a species and take us further along the path. 

    The argument is always made, “If God exists, why do horrible things happen?” Because God gave us free will, and we fucked it up. If I created a species with all the wonderful gifts and beautiful planet that we have, and they shat on it like we’ve shat on what God created, I’d turn my back on them too.

    Or maybe God is so much bigger than that, maybe God sparked the Big Bang, and sat back in a chair and said “let’s see what happens”

    I guess, the main point here is that, well, you’re all going about this stupidly. Atheists, to claim God doesn’t exist means that you claim to know how the Universe works in every fashion and that you are much bigger than human, ignorance. Pure, unadulterated ignorance. On the flip side, Christians, to claim that you know God’s will, or to pretend you know how he works or in what ways is equally ignorant. Nobody here is bigger than anybody else, and this is one giant pissing match.

    Shut up, live your lives, stop whining when someone questions your beliefs, and stop claiming to know more than you do. 
    You all look like fools

  • Unbiased Observer

    out of curiosity, what do you plan to do? At the very least, blacksheep is, in his mind, doing something good for them, wishing them well, keeping them in his heart, and loving them like he was taught to do in learning his religion.

    You don’t believe that prayer does any good. That’s awesome, you’re more than entitled to your opinion, as it is no more or less valid than blacksheeps. But with that being said, what are you going to do. How are you going to help them. Are you going to donate money to them? Are you going to take up arms for gun control, or rally support for the mental illness research in this country so these shootings stop happening?

    Since prayer means nothing to you, if you’re not going to do anything practical to help the families of those in need and in pain right now, blacksheep should feel very sorry for you, because at least in his mind, he’s doing something, which is better than nothing. And if you are planning on doing nothing, that makes you an even bigger asshole for belittling blacksheep’s plan of keeping them in his prayers. and hypocritical, let’s not forget hypocritical

    So tell me, what are you going to do

  • Karla Lynch

    Pointing fingers and passing blame on an internet thread will change nothing. Pray, by all means, if it brings comfort, but please, respect my chosen right not to. I cope and grieve in my own fashion. Learn to look beyond what makes us different and focus on what makes us the same; what makes us driven to give voice to the sorrow we’re all feeling. Our schools and teachers are not responsible to teach religion or, more importantly, respect, ethics and compassion. A child’s first and most important teachers are in the home. Compassion, understanding, empathy, tolerance. These should be foremost lessons taught to all children… and apparently a lesson many parents failed to teach their children, as is evident in some of the comments I’ve read on the internet in response to this tragedy. Go hug your children. Find what solace you can. Grieve as you see fit. Now is a time to mourn in solidarity and out of respect for those who lost their lives and the families and loved ones left behind who’s lives have been shattered. Your accusations and arguments are meaningless. Stop this pointless bickering and put your energy to things that matter. Hold tight to what you have and be grateful. These are fragile things and meant to be cherished.

  • Unbiased Observer

    The stories of Sodom and Gomorrah are much bigger than their sexual exploits, that’s a common misconception, they were destroyed because of how they treated strangers. It was a message to love one another no matter who they are or if you know them. It was a metaphor not to be taken literally. Sex was just the outlet for the metaphor because sex was demonized all throughout the Bible, but sex had nothing to do with the destruction of the city

  • Rich Wilson

    Suggesting that making kids in school pray could have prevented this is insulting  and damaging to the millions of Americans who go about their daily lives without praying, and not shooting anyone.  It suggests that what’s wrong with us is that we don’t pray.  It’s a demonizing statement, and speaking out IS doing good, especially for all the students in school right now who don’t pray.

    It’s akin to ‘us’ saying that people going to church and praying causes them to kill people.  It’s asinine.

    Granted, this particular venue is too insular to make much difference.  But I am also taking the thoughts and ideas I’ve gathered here to facebook, where I hope I can get some of my friends and relatives who support school prayer to re-think what it means.  It’s a little less insular, and who knows, maybe some seeds will grow.

  • Rich Wilson

    Doesn’t say much about how you’re supposed to treat your own children.  Oh, right, they were just girls.  Carry on then.

  • Jack Frost

    Atheists are 15% of the population as a whole, yet they’re less than 1% of the prison population. Explain that one Mr Eric “asshole” Hovind.

  • Judy Jackson

    Where was his god when Larry Gene Ashbrook shot up Wedgwood Baptist Church in 1999? My 17 year old son DIED that night.

  • Post

    If praying in school would stop the violence, why is there so much violence. like child rape and shootings. in church?

  • Karla Lynch

    I am completely appalled by many of the other posts and comments I’ve read pertaining to this tragedy. All you can do is argue, pass blame, point fingers and criticize? Believe me, I’m not surprised that this has caused a great deal of very strong emotions, but the conduct, disrespect and division I am witnessing is not making the situation any better. It is not a schools responsibility to teach religion. It is also not their responsibility to teach compassion, ethics, morality, tolerance, and love, yet many of them do this regardless. These things should be instilled in all children, well before they begin primary school. I can see, by the response of many people, that their parents failed to do this. Set aside your differences and cease your bickering.

    Now is not the time to debate. Now is a time to grieve in unison, as a nation and as a world,  for those who lost their lives and those they left behind in wake of this devastation  Whether you believe in God or not is beside the point. Go hug your children, if you have them. The things we have are fragile and meant to be cherished. Personally, I choose to focus on what makes us the same at this time, which is our compassion and our collective grief. What you focus on is completely up to you.

  • Judy Jackson

    Okay, Billy, using your logic. Where was your god on September 15th, 1999 when Larry Gene Ashbrook shot up Wedgwood Baptist Church? 7 people, including my 17 year old son died in that church. 7 others were wounded, one of the wounded was a 16 year old boy who was left permanently paralyzed by a bullet wound to his spine. Maybe yourgod had someplace else to be that night?  I would love to hear you spin this.

  • Ian M. Walker

    Funny how this deity was also unable to stop all the child molestations in CHURCHES.

  • Brian Scott

    Bad equivocation. The response you deserve is “how do you tell the difference between a godless universe and a so-called free will god universe”?

    Also, mandatory:

  • Joanna H.

    I am a Roman Catholic and I am beyond disgusted with Hovind’s comment, and with the behavior of all the Christians who exploited this tragedy to promote an agenda. Violence is committed for all sorts of reasons and there rarely is only one. We don’t even know all the facts at this time, and we knew even less last night. The killer is dead so we can’t cross-examine him. Who the hell knows why he did it?

    The idea that this shooting was caused by a lack of God in schools is embarrassing and bizarre on multiple levels. Number one, if God exists, and He is all-powerful and everywhere, then it would be impossible for anyone to keep Him out of schools. Number two, teachers and students can still express Christian belief and their right to do so has been vigorously protected, (many of them with the support of that evil atheist organization, the ACLU). The only thing forbidden is for teachers to lead students in religious expression, and for good reason. 

    I mean, really, during the Civil Rights era, a black church was bombed by a racist in Birmingham, AL. Four black girls were killed. Are these Christians going to argue that God was not in churches? In the South during the 1960s, no less? *Shakes head.*

  • Jody

    you are incredibly ignorant for using the word ‘retarded’ – if you want to be taken seriously, write intelligently.

  • Rich Wilson

    I’m assuming my name in there was a typo.  I happen to have two nieces (an a nephew) in the area, but not at that school.

  • Bubba Tarandfeathered

    A) I’m guessing you didn’t get the Matrix Movie spoof of Agent Smith’s diatribe about viruses to Morpheus?

  • Guest

    He has a good point. Under atheism, shooting millions of little children means nothing in the long run.

  • Littlesaras

    If God does not exist, why is it that the Bible has never been out of print? I know he exists because I have seen him work in my life, doors opening in positive ways that cannot be explained in any other way, except my faith in God. I say you are the weak minded to say there is no such spiritual being as God. It is really the strong minded who believe because of a little thing called FAITH!

  • LittleSaraS

    There is no such thing called Sky Fairy. I feel bad for you, do you belong to the Communist Party?

  • Glasofruix

    Uh, what? Do we have another ignoramus among us?

  • Bill Kowalski

    I believe if you will put your casual assumptions on hold for a moment and do some checking you will find the religion of the male parent, or lack of it, is totally irrelevant as to whether someone wishes wholesale destruction on innocents.     Some, like Eric Rudolph, even had the audacity to feel justified by God in committing murders.   

  • Bill Kowalski

    If there really were an interventional god, I wonder where he was during this shooting.  I don’t think there’s any evidence to disprove the existence of a god or gods, but there’s really no reason to try to maneuver this tragedy into a commercial for religion, or against it, so I’ll shut up.

  • Bill Kowalski

    Printing a lot of a book, even when it has been rewritten and edited as heavily as the bible, doesn’t make it proof of anything.   “Catcher in the Rye” is still fiction.   

  • michelleg

    For those that beleive they beleive, if you need proof otherwise then it’s up to you to foot the challenge.

  • michelleg

    Here’s a thought, if an atheist proudly proclaims to be an atheist, yet demands beleivers to give proof of the existance of an ultimate creator, when they themselves have no idea of what they beleive in themselves.
    Since an atheist can no more dissprove the existance of an ultimate creator, it would be far better if they understood that in fact they aren’t atheist at all, they are agnostic.

    That doesn’t mean they have any more authority to knock other peoples beleifs, no more than a beleiver has any right to knock someone for beleiving that something doesn’t exist.

    As Thomas Jefferson wrote….. “It does me no harm whether my neighbor beleives in one God, many Gods, or no Gods”…….
    Harm only happens if one side or the other tries to force their view on other by violating  their rights in order to do so.
    This doesn’t mean a person can force someone to sit in a church, or to force a person not to enter a church.
    But both sides can discuss their beleifs, and neither should be angered at the other for holding their positions without retreat.
    Problems only happen when each side shows their lack of maturity, and become angry.
    There is something to be learned from both sides, and there is reasonable evidences to support opinions.
    Nevertheless neither side should force the other to be made to feel less worthy in their opinion, and neither should have their voice removed in a public forum of discussion.