2nd Top Q: “Is It Unfair To Call All Religions ‘Scams’?”

2nd Top Q: “Is It Unfair To Call All Religions ‘Scams’?” January 2, 2011

According to the Friendly Atheist, American Atheists are running the ad below in Huntsville, Alabama:

Is it fair to call all churches scams?  Obviously there are at least some quite sincere believers.  Do all perpetuations of falsehoods and false promises for profit (of various forms) count as scams?  Or are the only scams those which are perpetuated deliberately as lies?  Or scams only those which aim at, or are indifferent to, the harmful exploitation of those they duped by the lies and false promises?  If a religion begins as a deliberate scam does it stop being one when a generation or two later it is filled with true believers who no longer even know that it started as a scam?  Can a scam go legit simply by dint of the gullible later generation leaders’ sincerity?

So, is it telling a lie if you don’t know it is a lie?  Is it a scam if it fills certain criteria of falsehood or does it require deliberate malice?

In short, today’s open philosophical question is, “Is it unfair to call all religions ‘scams’?”

Should atheists disown this American Atheists campaign in Alabama?

If you would still like to address the first, and inaugural, TOP Q it is: “How, If At All, Can People’s Claims To Simply Intuit That There Is A God Be Rationally Refuted Or Supported?”

Your Thoughts?

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