The road to evil on this earth is paved with good intentions.

Every single parent in this video loved their child as sincerely as you or I would, or do, love our children.  They wanted their children to be well.

Good intentions are insufficient to keep a person from being a monster.  A responsible person must work to make sure he does not hold inaccurate beliefs in order to prevent their good intentions from getting twisted.  This is the failure of each and every religion: telling people it’s ok to be unreasonable.

And every Christian who is charitable while also advancing faith as a virtue?  They’re part of the problem.  Their charity is not an issue, their spreading the idea that faith is a virtue is something that must be fought in them just as fiercely as in fundamentalists.  That’s our message to fundamentalists: you’re wrong, and the nice Christians are just as wrong.  We should not focus on telling religious people to be wrong in the less malicious way, we should be telling them they need to treat their beliefs like their accuracy matters.

And what’s more, it’s not just he cases in this video – there is no situation in which prayer, when something else could be done, is not neglect.

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.

  • Glodson

    He let his child suffer for his religion.

    Fuck religion.

    They let their baby suffer for their religion.

    Fuck religion.

    This is sickening. And you progressive Christians, you are part of the problem. You help this.

    It is past time to put superstition behind us.

    • Glodson

      This is the second time I’ve watched this. I didn’t make it all the way through on my first attempt.

      This is both enraging and heartbreaking. This is the poison of religion.

      • Glodson

        Last one, I swear.

        The last part… “That’s your belief and we have ours.”

        To that person: fuck you. We have evidence and reason, and fucking medicine that prevents the needless suffering and death your belief recklessly forces onto children, you sick fuck. I believe in being compassionate to the religious, but there’s a breaking point for even my compassion.

  • pjmaertz

    The last comment made in the video, “That’s your belief, and we have ours,” is pretty much the whole reason I hate religion.

  • Andrew Kohler

    Yes, you may have your own beliefs, dear, but you haven’t your own reality.

    I have just found the Child Rights International Network’s report on what is termed “harmful traditional and cultural practices.” Rest assured that, while religion is not explicitly mentioned in that monicker, it is acknowledged as one of many reasons for practices that harm children. Here’s an explanation:

    “The turning point will not come until we drop these hesitations and apply and enforce human rights standards consistently. As our report rightly underlines, the Convention on the Rights of the Child upholds the child’s own independent right to religious freedom. Children are not born into a religion; every individual has the right to religious freedom. Thus, parents and others cannot quote their adult religious beliefs to justify perpetrating harmful practices on a child, before she or he has the capacity to provide an informed consent.”

    It’s hard to picture that this could be said with much greater clarity.

    I’ll also give the link (even though it will trigger moderation–silly) for their report from last October:

    Be warned it’s harrowing to read, but the group is to be commended for including a wide range of harmful practices, religious and otherwise. In addition to well-known atrocities like FGM, denial of medical treatment, honor killings, and child marriage, the report also includes gang initiation, male circumcision (a recent and overdue addition), and milk teeth extraction (a new one on me–ugh). I was very pleased to see they include sex reassignment surgery for intersex children.

    Also of interest is the Child Friendly Faith Project, run by Janet Heimlich (the daughter of the man who figured out how to dislodge objects from choking people’s tracheae), who has written a book about abusive religious practices. The group is neutral as to whether or not religion itself is a good thing, but is committed to ending the elements of religion that harm children. Very good work.

    “Hide your face and weep if you dare to harm a child.” –Christopher Hitchens, from his new and improved ten commandments

  • Thumper1990

    I hate these people. I shouldn’t; they’ve been raised in this stupid faith and you can’t blame someone for being a product of their environment. But I do. That second couple “admitted they wouldn’t go to a doctor unless ordered to”?! Fuck them. Fuck them and their faith.

    “We have our beliefs”, fuck you especially. Your beliefs are wrong, and they kill children. If people believe medicine is sinful, they have every right not to seek it. But they have no right to subject their children to those same beliefs.