In my experience, the bible goes on, especially in the old testament, about how to treat people who are different than you. It's full of hate and cruelty, with some arbitrary rules thrown in. Only a few of those rules are sensible. The rest are about control. From the little I know of the quran, it's even worse.
I'm not going to pick the bible (or the quran) apart. It's not worth my time and aggravation. If you believe that the bible is the divinely inspired word of god, you're only going to skim this article, find a few points to attack me while you brew up a cup of moral and righteous indignation, and then try to shove your fundamentalism down my throat because you're scared of people who think for themselves and don't have blind faith in fairy tales from the Fertile Crescent like you do. You don't listen anyway, you just find ammunition then viciously attack. What great role models you are. How very christ-like.
On the other hand, if you are truly interested in breaking free of the iron fist of god ruling your life and keeping you in ignorant fear, you can go to the Skeptic's Annotated Bible and look around for yourself.
The atheists who read this probably have already read that awful book, because as a general rule, we need to be more educated on religious matters than those militant religious folks that try to tell us how we should believe.
So, onto the 10 reasons atheists are morally superior, in no particular order, and my personal opinion about each one:
- No god tells me to hate gay people, so I have no reason to hate them. In fact I think if gay people love each other and want to get married, more power to them. Why should we stop love and caring based on gender? I encourage loving and caring any way it manifests itself.
- No god tells me that women are inferior and should subject themselves to men. So I'm equal to a man. Except getting spiders out of the house. He can be superior to me in that department. Oh, and opening jars. He can have that one too.
- No god tells me to pray instead of seeking medical attention. I believe in all kinds of scientific research and medicine. I even believe in stem cell research. I also think a woman has a right to choose what to do with her body. This probably goes up under the 'women are equal' entry as well, because I think it's ridiculous that an old man I will never meet gets to decide what I can and can't do with my body. Oh, and euthanasia should be considered an option, although it would have to be properly done so that no one gets murdered. But come on, if life is so freaking precious, why make some sick and dying person go through agony and humiliation and endure countless medical procedures just to stay alive? That's insane. Oh! And the death penalty is a great idea. We should use it more for heinous criminals. Definitely.
- No god tells me to hate people who believe in the same god but in a "wrong" way. Ok, that's just stupid. At thanksgiving dinner my cousin was harassed by the fundamentalist methodists there because she went to 3 different bible camps from 3 different churches. She said, it's all the same god, why does it bother you so much? I had to agree with her. They're so hateful and ignorant.
- No god tells me to be fruitful and multiply, then says that sex for fun is bad, then tells me that only sex between married people is ok, then denies me any kind of way to turn off my insatiable teenage sex drive except to come up with abstinence and praying as a lame solution. Which means that I am all for teaching teenagers and anyone who might think of sex how to be safe and protected. Nothing is more dangerous than ignorance. Proper education and access to prophylactics are real ways to reduce teen pregnancy and the spread of STD's. Also, as noted above, I also believe that mistakes happen, and so do horrible crimes against women. The morning after pill should be available to girls and women who need them to avoid unwanted pregnancies, and abortions, while not the ideal solution, should be legal and safe. Sometimes they are necessary, and a woman or girl shouldn't be bullied or forced into carrying a baby to term. Oh, and back to the 'be fruitful and multiply thing'. I didn't even have to have kids in the first place because I'm strong enough in myself that I don't need some namesake to carry on for me or continue to overpopulate the planet simply because a god said I had to, thousands of years ago. Or worse, I am not starving in some third world country, having babies one after the other for my whole short life because the christians forced their god on me long ago and imposed their ridiculous rules and told us stupid lies.
- No god tells me to hate people who look different than me, so I am free to see everyone as equal and the same, just with different packaging. No need to be racist. (Oh, yeah, Hitler was religious. So don't even bother with that one, christians. He's yours, not ours.)
- No god tells me to start a war over another land having the wrong god or the wrong types of people (see the one above), so I don't have to support pointless wars that justify some ridiculous ancient prophecy or for other silly reasons, like god talking directly to the leader of my country. (Don't even get me started on how scary that is. At least he's gone now!)
- No god makes promises to me about being a martyr, so I have no reason to strap a bomb to myself and blow up a train station or whatever kills the most innocent people.
- No god makes open-ended promises that will never come true about armageddon and going up to heaven soon, so I am responsible about the environment, and try my best to have a small impact on the planet, and also support research into making things better for everyone through science and smarter living.
- No god promises eternal life to me, so I understand that this life is precious. I take personal responsibility seriously, and I live my life the best way I can because it's the only one I've got. I value the lives of others too, for the same reason. Which is why I believe in the death penalty as I stated above. If you are a heinous person that has murdered, or other reprehensible crimes which would require you to be imprisoned for the rest of your life, I think you should be put to death quickly after a fair trial. No pussy-footing around. Because you don't deserve life, and you've destroyed the lives of others. There's no fix for you. So why the hell should we take better care of you when you showed no regard for the victims of your psychopathy? That's crazy.
See, atheists don't have some god telling them what to do, how to (not) think, how to believe. We think for ourselves. We figure out what's right based on our life experiences, and hopefully some good role models, then do our best to live good lives, simply because it's the right thing to do. Also, it's basic common sense.
Don't kill or steal, don't lie or cheat. Why not? Because we're all part of society, and we have to get along with everyone, at least for the basics, if we want to enjoy the easier life being in society affords us. Not to mention the empathy that we wouldn't want those things to happen to us, so we don't do them to others. This is the golden rule, the silver rule, and the platinum rule, which jesus didn't come up with first, by the way. It's a basic human concept, as old as humanity. Oh, and another reason we don't do bad things?
Consequences and personal responsibility. I drive the speed limit through town because I don't want a ticket. I understand that there are consequences for my actions, and that I am personally responsible for everything I do.
So with all those warped beliefs not indoctrinated into my mind, along with some common sense, an understanding of some simple concepts of cause and effect and personal responsibility, not to mention being aware of how good life is as a member of society and not in the woods in a cave with a stick, I have no trouble being an ethical atheist, when the only thing that stops christian fundamentalists and muslims from murdering and pillaging is an invisible man in the sky watching their every move, ready to ban them to an eternity of fire and torture because he gave them free will and then won't let them use it? Huh.
Yeah, I'd say most atheists are definitely morally superior to religious fundamentalists.