Cordially Invited to Leave the Country

Ugh…here I am on vacation trying to relax, play a little Child of Eden with Christina, maybe write a couple fun blogs.  But then people write opinion columns that make me want to verbally vomit on them for the world to read.

Here’s the story.  Arizona’s governor proclaimed a statewide day of prayer and the FFRF attempted to sue them back to the stone age.  The judge dismissed the case because…

Freedom From Religion Foundation had no legal standing to sue Arizona’s governor for proclaiming a statewide day of prayer. The court said they were not injured by the governor’s proclamation, saying:

Plaintiffs provide affidavits to establish they turned off the television and altered conversational habits to avoid the topic of religion or the day of prayer.

Plaintiffs, however, do not explain why their alleged injury is different than injuries in other Establishment Clause cases in which the plaintiffs did not have standing, such as the President’s day of prayer proclamation. Essentially, Plaintiffs seek a ruling obliquely holding that injury sufficient to confer standing exists under the Establishment Clause where government action is covered in the news or the subject of a social conversation.

The Court declines to depart from Establishment Clause case law on this ground. Plaintiffs have not shown injury beyond “stigmatic injury” or feeling like an “outsider.”

Feeling like an outsider in the eyes of your government is a pretty big fucking deal.  You can bet how eager the faithful would be to lap up this ruling had the governor proclaimed a national day of no prayer, where people were asked (but not obligated) to get up off their asses and try to fix problems the new-fashioned way.

Anyway, Mary Kochan wrote a column for Catholic Lane that gloated over the ruling and summed up her displeasure with atheists in general.  

You have the audacity to tell us Christians that we are “weak” and that our religion is a “crutch.” [We certainly think Christians are wrong, don't know about that other stuff] You are supposed to be so “courageous,” venturing forth boldly into the existential mystery of being alone, facing with stoicism the nothingness that awaits you at death, [tornadoes kill people, children die of starvation...because you think something's depressing doesn't make it false] priding yourself on your realism and self-reliance. [What but religion could get someone to sneer at "realism"?  "Yes, sit over there in your tower with your realism!"] You are a bunch of feeble fakers.

Yes, you are outsiders. [Notes that atheists are outsiders and the response is not for religious people to stop treating us that way. I wonder if she thinks Christianity makes people more compassionate...]  Go start your own damn country. [Could we stay and try and fix this one?]  This one was started by Christians [who must have been amazing idiots if they meant to put god, Jesus, or special privilege for Christians in the Constitution and just forgot...have a little respect for our founding fathers, geez!], you puerile dimwits [says the person who believes a guy rose from the dead 2,000 years ago]. It is Christians who established [even if that were  They also thought slavery was a good idea...they were wrong about that too] and largely Christians who fought and died to maintain the freedoms you enjoy [the freedom to be Christian or get out of the country?].  And Christians are still the majority ["Soon the rebellion will be crushed..."  ...and people wonder why we worry about power in the hands of religion].  Apparently your vaulted belief system doesn’t equip you to handle being in the minority [we're cool being in the minority, it's the demonizing, prejudice, and people using the tyranny of the majority to preserve inequality that sucks]. That’s interesting, isn’t it?  [No]  After all, this was and is a societal situation valiantly handled by millions and millions of Christians who suffered — and currently suffer — real oppression, violence, torture, economic deprivation, and cruel deaths [In the United States?  What happened to "Christians are still the majority?].  But you have to go through turning off the TV once in a while and so your precious puny feelings are hurt [Yes, I can imagine how you look down on people who have had their precious feelings hurt and lash out angrily...]. How delicate and frail your mental architecture is! [There is stigma against non-believers produced and maintained by religious institutions.  We could either accept it or push back.  Most of us, with a few exceptions, are pushing back. This strikes me as the more courageous route...then again, I don't know how courageous it feels writing from the majority position, telling others how hard the majority has it, and using that majority position to invite the minority to jettison themselves.  Probably takes more balls than it looks from down here]

You are a pitiful joke. [Then you've got one lousy sense of humor. A pitiful joke is selling someone on the idea that woman was made from a rib, or that the most moral being in the universe commanded the death of anybody who worked on a Saturday, or that you should give 10% of your income to somebody who speaks for god. You want to talk about pitiful...] Trembling over the mere mention of God. [More pissed at the people who think believing absurdities entitles them] Running like babies to court because of your brittle feelings. [Silly judges considering the rights of the minority against the tyranny of the majority. Don't they know how many Christians there are?  Then again, if religious people weren't so frequently willing to shit on the law to nab sectarian privilege then the courts wouldn't help us much]  “Oh, but judge, but judge, I saw a cross and I just can’t stand it.” [Show me that lawsuit] “I heard someone say ‘Merry Christmas’ and it hurt my feelings.” [Show me that lawsuit. Also, stop chiding people for wishing you well] “I just can’t sleep knowing there is a manger scene at the courthouse.” [I do lose sleep over one religion getting precedence over all others on government property and endorsed by the government. Read: I get pissed when my fellow citizens break the law.  You don't get exemption because you're the majority. Those laws would also protect Christians if they were in the minority] “The sight of the Ten Commandments makes me wet my pants.” [The government endorsing one religion over others is illegal.  I get pissed when my fellow citizens break the law.  You don't get exemption because you're the majority. Those laws would also protect Christians if they were in the minority...and given how much you bellowed about Christians being oppressed earlier, I would think you'd be all for this]

Now we see how inadequate and feeble you really are. [If we're inadequate, you've got some really thin skin...] Rage, therapists say, is the flip side of helplessness. [Perhaps we could do well to emulate the picture of halcyon calm that is this opinion column...] And so we see your rage against religion in the public square for what it is: a product of your own insubstantial internal resources. [Say what?] Go look at yourself in the mirror if you can bear the pathetic, contemptible sight of yourself. [Checked the mirror. I look like a human being.  I have chipmunk cheeks and upward-slanting eyebrows that make me look kind of snuggly.  In fact, I look just like a Christian!  I'll bet I have a beating heart and everything!  Should I want the same rights as other human beings who happen to be in the majority?  I'm so conflicted]

I love it.  “Majority rules, but consider the poor, oppressed Christians!”; “Atheists need to shut up and leave, and stop pitching fits when they’re affronted!”; “Rage is so unbecoming of you !@#$!%!$! atheists!”

So Steven Hawking?  Gonna burn for eternity.  Mary Kochan?  Gets a seat right next to Jesus.  Perhaps we shouldn’t expect Christians to have a discerning eye for what is fair or just.

About JT Eberhard

When not defending the planet from inevitable apocalypse at the rotting hands of the undead, JT is a writer and public speaker about atheism, gay rights, and more. He spent two and a half years with the Secular Student Alliance as their first high school organizer. During that time he built the SSA’s high school program and oversaw the development of groups nationwide. JT is also the co-founder of the popular Skepticon conference and served as the events lead organizer during its first three years.

  • Randomfactor

    OK, we’re “outsiders.”

    So were the Samaritans. Your mythical savior sure had it in for THAT bunch of weirdos, didn’t he, lady?

  • julian

    Go look at yourself in the mirror if you can bear the pathetic, contemptible sight of yourself.

    What every believer thinks of atheists.

  • Randomfactor

    Christianity at its best–any religion at its best–is a mirror for finding your own faults. This woman thinks she can see us through her mirror.

  • Zinc Avenger

    Feel that Christian love.

    We’re the majority and the government is on our side so stop persecuting and oppressing us or we’ll crush you effortlessly!

  • Sophia


    The link to the story is not taking me to the source…can I get a proper link? Thanks!

    Also, wow. Just wow. How can people be so cruel and claim to be good?

    • JT Eberhard

      Gah, link fixed. Thanky!

      • Sophia

        Thank you!

  • Alix

    So… Much… Red… Text!
    The mark of a winner!

  • Ziztur

    Have I mentioned to you lately that you’re really awesome, JT?

  • Lana C

    “I have chipmunk cheeks and upward-slanting eyebrows that make me look kind of snuggly.”

    And it’s JT for the win!!!
    Oh, yeah, and everything else you said too.

    • Kate from Iowa

      LOL! That bit was what I latched onto too! Too much red text! Too much! ….ahhhh…chipmunks….

      Okay, I may also have taken too much cold medicine…

  • Super M

    Mary Kochan is an uncivilised fool. Thankfully we have laws and a established social order to protect us from crazy people like her.

    • Super M

      AN dammit An lol

  • Super M

    just looked at an article on the site this crazy writes for.. here is one of the infantile/moronic comments. In the end he says “Baby Joseph is a witness for the prosecution.”
    LMFAO.. what a dolt

    “Carlos says:

    March 16, 2011 at 8:11 PM

    Yes. The powers that be are afraid of two things: crosses and babies. Their ideal world is world without a Cross and without babies. Both signify innocence. It is the innocence of Christ in the Cross that saves us. It is also the hope in the saving power of life what makes us wonder what will this baby will become one day when we see one. Innocence is the opposite of sin. Our world has become lawless through the glorification of sin and the deprecation of innocence.

    When I was young I used to listen to the Carpenters and was criticized by my mates because their music was so “square”. Everyone was busy trying to be a transgressor of the rules of music (and beauty) and that early flower is now coming to full fruition: death.

    Forget the radiation in Japan. That kind of evil radiation emanating from the “Summer of Love” will eventually take us to a “Winter of Death”. Good thing that God is there watching from a distance and letting us taste (only for a while) the bitterness of our folly.

    Mankind is about to be prosecuted for crimes against innocence. Baby Joseph is a witness for the prosecution.”

    • Johnnykaje

      “Forget the radiation in Japan. That kind of evil radiation emanating from the “Summer of Love” will eventually take us to a “Winter of Death”. ”

      How fucked up do you have to be to think that love and peace are not only bad things, but worse than actual fucking radiation?

    • Kate from Iowa

      Wait, what? Baby Joeseph? What fucked up reading of the nativity fable is he getting? He goes to one of those churches where the congregation only gets to open thier bibles in “guided study”, doesn’t he?

      And um…against…babies? I’m not entirely sure, but I don’t remember hearing any athiest credo about “thou shalt not reproduce unless thou intend to eatest it basted in a nice white wine sauce and served with cherries.”

      • papango

        I think he is referring to Joseph Maraachli. The comment was made just a couple of days after the pro-life groups brought him to the US to do the operation that the Canadian doctors thought was futile. It was a whole big thing.

        • Kate from Iowa

          Ah, makes more sense. I suppose.

          Wait, no it fucking doesn’t. How does that have anything to do with athiests and whether or not christianity is right and

          and you know what? Fuck it. I am just not capable of caring today.

          • papango

            Oh, no. This doesn’t make him less crazy. That whole situation was ridiculous (Priests For Life sent a private jet) and this comment is just the tip of the batshit iceberg of lunacy that the pro-lifers were spitting.

  • Thomas Lawson

    To quote Nicholson’s Joker from Batman (1989):

    “This town needs an enema.”

  • Thomas Lawson

    What confuses me is that their fables say that Jesus will return when the bad stuff starts to happen. They think that abortions, rampant atheism, and homosexuality are bad. Yet they fight to keep these things at bay. Do they not want the J-man to come back or what?


    You’d think they’d all take a year off, let progressives pass all the legislation they want, let all gays get married, etc., and then sit back and wait for the big guy to come down and open that can of whoop-ass. Alas, maybe they don’t really believe what they say they do, or perhaps none of them really want to be judged just yet because they’ve been so cruel. I’m calling their collective bluff.

  • Sean

    How about all you US atheists do leave the country and move over here to the UK? We’ll send all of our theists in exchange – everybody wins!

    • NotAProphet


      It pisses me off when crazies like this lady talk about all the Xtians dying for freedom. I’m serving, and I do it to defend people-like-her’s right to believe bat-shit crazy stuff, along with our right to tell them they are bonkers and why. My service for my country and my people does not come with conditions.

    • Karen Winter

      Sounds great, until you carry the idea to it’s inevitable conclusion.
      With the UK filled with atheists, and the US filled and run by religionists – OMFG, how long do you think it would take before the religionists decided to wipe us off of the map?

      Nice idea, but, we need to focus on solving our problems, not exchanging them for bigger ones.

      Besides, some of us really like it here.

  • donaldmorton

    I responded to this article here.

  • Dana Hunter

    JT, my dear, this was a thing of beauty. And so are you. <3

  • Pinky

    Mr. Eberhard (or Hey JT) I had read your name in various places of the Atheist world, but I did not realize I needed to read your blog until I saw your recent video about mental health. Thanks for having the gumption to not only talk in front of a live audience (many of whom were your peers), but to also release it as a video.

    I came here not to praise Ceasar (to paraphrase Shakespeare), but to make a suggestion: to format your remarks, when they are mixed in with another’s rant, as with this article, with more than just brackets. Maybe a different color and/or bold or italics – something to make them stand out more.

    It would make easier reading for those of us who are fuzzy of sight and dull of mind.

    Of course; free advice is rarely worth the money you pay for it.

  • Jurjen S.

    The judge’s motives are pretty transparent here: he knows perfectly well that FFRF is in the right and that the governor’s decree is in blatant violation of the Establishment Clause, but he’s too chickenshit to make a ruling that will be very unpopular in some quarters. So he reaches for the tried and tested cop-out of declaring that the plaintiff lacks standing (which, as you will recall, is how the SCOTUS managed to avoid having to take a stance in Newdow v. Elk Grove, among others). Evidently, our judiciary is not sufficiently independent to render its members unafraid to make unpopular decisions.

    Ms Kochan, incidentally, by her own logic, had better restrict herself to living in Maryland, this being the only one of the original thirteen states that welcomed Catholics. It’s also quite remarkable how, with the alteration of a few choice words, her screed sounds like she’s talking about Bill Donohue, who screams persecution whenever anyone has the temerity to say something nasty about any prominent Catholic.