Kirk Cameron Doesn’t Understand Atheism

The video below, part of The Atheist Voice series, discusses how Kirk Cameron doesn’t seem to understand the atheism he loves to talk about.

In case you missed Cameron’s video from a couple of days ago, you’ll want to watch that here first!

We’d love to hear your thoughts on the project — more videos will be posted soon — and we’d also appreciate your suggestions as to which questions we ought to tackle next!

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.

  • new_atheist

    I feel like even talking about Kirk and his badly misguided views of atheists just give him a bit of credibility.

    • Rain

      I feel like even talking about Kirk and his badly misguided views of atheists just give him a bit of credibility.

      And publicity. He knows every time he trolls atheists it will spread like wildfire. That goes double for his compadre the banana guy. I heard he has expanded to other fruits now. I think he even sent a fruit basket to PZ Meyers.

      • C Peterson

        Seriously. I had never even heard of him until I started visiting this forum. And I’ve still never encountered his name anywhere but here.

        • Paul Lambert

          He was an actor on a popular sitcom in the 80s.

          • C Peterson

            I know that now. But since I’ve only watched a handful of sitcoms over the years, that one passed me by. So the end result is that the only place I’ve encountered Cameron is in articles reacting to something he has done or said.

            • cipher

              You didn’t miss anything.

  • Lawrence Congdon

    Very good video!

    2 things come to mind.

    Recent brain research has shown that some fundamentalists literally cannot imagine that someone would not believe in their God. Not just unable to imagine a ‘fantasy’ world (for them) without their God, but even unable to imagine that another person might not believe what they do.

    Thus, they can only assume that, since non-believers MUST also ‘know’ their God, that their claims of non-belief can only be an expression of childish – or even psychopathic – rebellion.

    Also, my own thought is that Abrahamic monotheism – the idea that there is a singular all-knowing father figure watching over you – touches a part of the human psyche that is very deep, even primordial.

    Buddhism, and the multiple personality-driven Gods of the Hindu, Classical, Norse, Animist and many Native American pantheons, do not touch this part of our brains. (And brain tests have also shown that stimulating a particular part of the brain makes people – regardless of their faith or lack of – sense a male presence floating in the air behind them).

    Thus, the visceral reaction and hackles many atheists feel when confronted by adamant Christians.

  • Brian

    I think giving Kirk constant attention is only feeding the troll.

  • LesterBallard

    Or much of anything else that is reality based.

  • Sheldon

    I don’t think fundies will ever be able to grasp the true essence of atheism, or why we came to that conclusion. They just can’t wrap their thought process around the concept, it’s so foreign to them.

    • http://atheistlutheran.blogspot.com/ MargueriteF

      There are people who were once fundamentalist and are now atheist. It’s not impossible for evangelicals to change. Some do.

      • Sheldon

        I’m one of those fundamentalists turned atheists.

        Of course I understand both mentalities, but as long as someone is still locked into the fundamentalist mindset and it’s subculture, they won’t be able to comprehend atheism, that’s what I mean, I’m talking about Kirk Cameron.

        • viaten

          Would you say it’s more that they actually think atheism is that way or more that they what to think atheism is that way. Maybe it’s hard to say if it’s one way or the other.

          • Sheldon

            I say it’s mostly what they think of us.

  • Atheist Diva

    I couldn’t watch anything after his initial statement, but so far as I’m concerned, there is no God, which is why it’s impossible for me to hate “him.” Christians make life miserable for atheists. That’s why I frequently find myself hating individual Christians as well–but some of them are my best friends. Also, Kirk Cameron has no interest in learning anything about atheists.

    • viaten

      But he’s learned quite well how to annoy atheists.

  • Rev. Achron Timeless

    If tomorrow, an entity appeared and could prove that it was the christian god, and fully endorsed word for word everything in the bible, yes I would hate that entity for a variety of reasons. Not going to hold my breath waiting though.

    As for saying “god doesn’t exist” well that all depends on what you mean by “god”. If you mean the christian god exactly as described in the bible who created everything but apparently couldn’t figure out the moon didn’t cast its own light or that the world wasn’t set on pillars… the one that every screwup it makes decides to kill people and let incest solve the problem… yet supposedly has infinite wisdom and foreknowledge… well of course that god doesn’t exist. It refutes itself. Can something we might call a god exist? Maybe, but it isn’t the christian one.

    I know I’m not alone in that assessment either. So, if you take an oversimplified view of the situation, as Kirk often does, then I can see why he might think that. He’s wrong, of course, but I can understand how he got there.

    • dave

      Isaiah 40:22, It is He who sits above the circle of the earth,
      And its inhabitants are like grasshoppers,
      Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain,
      And spreads them out like a tent to dwell in.

      Here the prophet Isaiah states the world is round long before any other scientist could claim it. Not sure about all the other references you are making. Yes there was war, but often He handed over man to his own depravity. There are instances when God called for war, but often it was to extinguish evil.

      • Rev. Achron Timeless

        Here “dave” purposely gets the meaning of the words sphere and circle confused with each other.

  • viaten

    I doubt he’s that dumb (but I still wonder sometimes if he could be and and how he could be). I think some Christians like seeing atheists riled with exaggerated and outlandish statements and that might be why he does it. Maybe it’s just the atheist reaction that makes some Christians feel better about their faith. All the greater their faith feels in light of provoked atheist reaction.

    • Rev. Achron Timeless

      One word that further complicates this: crocoduck.

      Either he honestly believes we think such a thing happened/is possible, or he’s trolling at a master’s level. Assuming he is messing with people, he’s not only riling us up by claiming we are describing such a thing, but he’s also duping the more uneducated theists into believing we think such a thing as well. It’s a two-fer.

      Out of the possibilities that he’s either an idiot or actually learned to act, I’m oddly more comfortable with him being an idiot.

      • viaten

        He claims if evolution were true there must be something like a “transitional” crocoduck, living or fossil, but evolutionists still haven’t found any, so evolution must be wrong. (And he claims they’ve been looking hard as if they know it’s crucial.) I can’t believe he honestly believes that but it seems he expects other believers will believe it without thinking about it, or if not, at least go along with it, if only to annoy atheists and evolutionists. I would rather not think of him as an idiot, or rather, not dismiss him as an idiot. It’s too simple a term. I’d like to know what makes such minds as his tick rather than dismissing them as total idiots or total cons. Some might be mostly cons, but I doubt any are mostly idiots.

  • advancedatheist

    The existence of a god doesn’t necessarily solve the problems Kirk wants it to solve. A god could, without logical contradiction, have created humanity without any meaning or purpose.

  • Paul Lambert

    I’m actually comfortable saying there is no god. No one claims we can’t know for sure there isn’t a Santa Claus, or pixies, invisible flying elephants or boogie men. Yes, I understand there’s no way to make a logical proof of nonexistence, but we need not consider ridiculous things.

    • Randay

      I do to and I think Epicurus in his much repeated quote proved the impossiblity of god through logic.

      “Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not
      omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he
      both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor
      willing? Then why call him God?”

      • C Peterson

        I’ve always considered that an incredibly weak argument. It assumes there is such a thing as “evil”, but that isn’t something that can even be defined clearly.

        You can’t use logic to prove the impossibility of a god; at best, you can only use it to make a strong argument against certain characteristics a god might have.

        • Randay

          I realized after I posted, that I had forgotten to include one conclusion the can be drawn from the argument: if a god exists he must be malevolent. “Evil” is not clearly defined, but Nietzsche did a pretty good job on it in “Beyond Good and Evil” and “Geneology of Morals”, worth a re-read.

          What does “malevolent” even mean to a god? Generally, what would “moral” mean to a god? “Morals” are necessarily of, by, & for humans and only apply to their actions. They are certainly not dictated by some deity.

    • C Peterson

      I’m actually comfortable saying there is no god

      Of course, many atheists will make that statement, in the same way an astronomer might assert that the Universe is explained by the Big Bang cosmology, or a physicist might assert that gravity is explained by General Relativity. Once something rises above a certain level of certainty, it is natural to treat it as a fact.

      Nevertheless, I expect that if somebody questioned you closely on your views, you would readily admit that your assertion isn’t based on 100% certainty, that there is a possibility of some god existing, and that you are perfectly open to accepting that given actual evidence.

      • Paul Lambert

        Yes, of course…and the same is true for magic, and Santa Clause and monsters in my closet. In the sense we can’t be certain of anything’s nonexistence. So if you’re willing to give real likelihood to these things as well, then I would agree with your statement. Otherwise you’re just giving deference to the claims of theists.

        Of course there are those too who will warp the generally understood notion of god/s and say nature is god or the forces that gave rise to the universe – whatever they be – are god, but that’s a whole other argument.

  • Without Malice

    Everyone’s an atheist when it comes to the other fella’s god. Christians, Jews, and Muslims may claim they worship the same god but it’s obvious that they don’t, unless of course the god of the Jews who spent a couple of thousand years telling them he was the one and the only being that could lay claim to being god just one day stuck his head out from behind a cloud and said, “Hey, guess what? I’ve got a son just like all the pagan gods, and he was born of a virgin too.” The god of Christianity is totally at odds with the god of the Jews who, when you get right down to it, is a totally non-ceptualizable being (thus no image can be made of him/her), while the god of Christianity is little more than warmed over pagan idol worship.

  • gg

    I love your videos, but your camera angle is very distracting. Can you please pull back, or adjust up the camera just a smidge, so the the top of your head doesn’t keep getting cut off? Please?

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/ Hemant Mehta

      Ha — I’ll pass that message along for next time :)

      • Rain

        See Citizen Kane (1941) for plenty of hokey camera tips and tricks. Practically every scene in that movie is a different hokey camera angle.

        • VCP

          Or you could film it like ‘Battlefield Earth’ – film school of scientology method.

  • RobertInSF

    What gets me about Kirk Cameron’s and Ray Comfort’s video’s, especially these talking head ones, is the smug, self-satisfied, smirking look on his face when he
    states his “gotcha!” line…just look at him in the video when he prepares to hit
    his mark on the line, “I want to share a secret with you…” about 7 seconds in.

    I mean the glee on his face he is holding barely in check …the anticipation you can see in his eyes and mouth of getting this revelatory, shocking, disruptive observation that will surely show the hypocrisy and desperation in the atheist viewpoint.

    I say all this as a Christian….I can’t stand this kind of witnessing. It’s more about slapping each other on the back as Christianists, and saying, “Aren’t *we* smart to observe and comment on all this? Haven’t *we* got it all figured out… that atheists aren’t sincere or honest with themselves? And we can prove that with just a simple, straight-forward, so clear a child can see it observation! Yeah we are!”


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