A headline from the Puffington Host informs us that in the on-going struggle to ensure that no one ever enjoys a benefit not enjoyed by everyone else [see single weddings, above]
How a small restaurant in Lancaster County PA can establish a religion, TOF does not know. Anyone remember “Ladies’ Nights”? So far, the restaurant is hanging in there. She [the owner] says if anyone brings in a bulletin from a mosque or synagogue, they get the discount, too. That may not be a big issue in Lancaster County. More likely the Amish, who don’t have churches per se, will be out in the cold; but they usually eat at home.
Meanwhile, in North Carolina, a first grader wrote a poem for Veteran’s Day, but was not allowed to read it. Why you ask? Why, because second graders can be an establishment of religion! The poem, which was about her grandfather’s service in Vietnam, contained the line:“He prayed to God for peace, he prayed to God for strength.”
It did not matter whether her grandfather had actually done so. It mattered only that she had used the Phorbidden Phrase. An *ssh*le parent complained and the line was stricken; thus teaching the child something about totalitarian techniques, the first amendment right to free speech, and the bullying methods of atheists. She should have written that her grandfather burned a flag and went to Canada. They would have stroked her for her courageous statement. Hate to be so direct, but Jeez, some people need to get a life.
And to complete the godless trifecta, we have a case across the river here where a teacher who habitually used the phrase “the first shall be last” was pestered by a student to find out where the phrase came from. (This is a high school student. He didn’t already know! So low has cultural education fallen.) So the teacher told him and outside of school hours gave him a Bible where he could look it up. And with that all of Western Civilization came tumbling down. The usual suspect complained and the teacher was threatened with firing. The words used made it sound like he had said something vulgar or had given the kid pornography. If he had, he might have been celebrated as transgressive. Who knows. But the thing is this: How can anyone be an educated member of Western Civilization without any knowledge of it foundational documents? Even to know the origins of common words and phrases? You don’t have to be Jewish to understand what means the phrase “as old as Methuselah.” You don’t have to be Christian to recognize the meaning of “turn the other cheek.” Heck, you don’t even have to turn the other cheek: you could offer a beat-down instead and kick the sucker in the mouth when he’s down. But you ought to know the origin and meaning of common expressions; and in English, that means the Bible and Shakespeare. Tough noogies. (Modern student don’t like to read Shakespeare, either. This will be handled by the new Obama “Common Core” standards to be imposed on all schools despite the Dept Ed. enabling legislation forbidding DoE from doing any such thing.)
More and more, I become convinced that dogmatic atheism is an expression, not of a philosophy, but of a particular kind of pathology that afflicts a small percentage of the population. It can win a sort of fashionable following that temporarily expands its ranks from time to time, just as other times its ranks will shrink. But it tends to remain roughly stable. And even 20% of those who self-identify as atheist also state they believe in God. But the fairly consistent tendency of dogmatic atheists to be insufferable jerks helps to insure that those with normal social and affective skills keep at arms length from them. And the tendency of male atheists to be, ‘ow you say, not good with the ladies (plus the tendency of atheists to loathe “breeders”–as normal people who like children are called) helps to ensure that atheism remains a self-limiting proposition. When it gets power, as for instance it did under such beloved figures as Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot, dogmatic missionary atheism turns its social ineptitude into a homicidal force for a utopian post-theist society. And when it is out of power, atheists tend to play the “no true Scotsman” game, pretending that murderous atheist regimes have nothing to do with atheism, while blaming Christians for the extermination of Canaanites by Joshua 3300 years ago.
Not all atheists are human toothaches, of course. But a big enough percentage of them are that atheist Phil Plait needed to plead with them not to be “d*cks“. He was roundly derided as a quisling by the very large Atheist Jerk community, who carefully examined their beautiful faces in the mirror and detected no flaws.