Essay: 4 challenges to Thunderf00t

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4 challenges to the YouTube atheist Thunderf00t:

1. If sexism against women is not a significant problem within the atheist population, please explain why the irreligious have a higher rate of domestic violence than theists? See: Irreligion and domestic violence

2. If sexism against women is not a significant problem within the atheist population, please explain why some of the most atheistic countries in Europe have the highest rates of domestic violence? See: Secular Europe and domestic violence

3. If sexual harassment against women is not really a problem within the atheist movement, please explain why the two most notable cases of mass rape in the 20th century have a connection to atheism? See: Mass rape during the occupation of Germany and Rape of Nanking (Japan is one of the most atheistic countries in the world[1]).

James Randi is a prominent atheist. Brian Thompson, former James Randi Educational Foundation (JREF) Outreach Coordinator, wrote:

But I no longer identify with this community of benevolent know-it-alls, because not all of them are the best folks in the world. In fact, a good percentage of the top ten worst humans I’ve ever met are prominent members of the skeptics’ club. They’re dishonest, mean-spirited, narcissistic, misogynistic. Pick a personality flaw, and I can probably point you to someone who epitomizes it. And that person has probably had a speaking slot at a major skeptical conference.

I grew particularly disgusted with the boys’ club attitude I saw among skeptical leaders and luminaries. The kind of attitude that’s dismissive of women, sexually predatory, and downright gross. When I first started going to skeptical conferences as a fresh-faced know-it-all, I started hearing things about people I once admired. Then I started seeing things myself. Then I got a job with the JREF, and the pattern continued.[2]

4. Thunderf00t you said in a video entitled How Feminism CASTRATED New Atheism!:

You see there was this new vibrant atheist movement and it had big hitters in it. It also had a bunch of talentless losers who wanted to ride on its momentum. To ride on its intellectual coattails.

This is how bad things have gotten from the proud era of the four horseman...

And this is why I hit this topic so often. Because in many ways I am bitter about this... These talentless losers took a vibrant and exciting group, a movement that had potential and they managed to allow themselves to be emotionally blackmailed by the moral piety brigade...

Because the movement is so now so infested with parasites that no matter what you say, you're guaranteed to offend at least one them.[3]

Thunderf00t, were the founder's of the New Atheism movement "big hitters" of atheism?

From 1954 to 1976, Hank Aaron held the MLB record for career home runs. His "big hitter" career lasted about 20 years.

On the other hand, the New Atheism movement was launched in 2004 and merely had a run of about 8 years before it ran aground on the shore of the Elevatorgate controversy.

Babe Ruth's career spanned from 1914 through 1935. From 1954 to 1976, Hank Aaron held the MLB record for career home runs. These baseball heavy hitters had outstanding careers which lasted about 20 years each.

On the other hand, the New Atheism movement was launched in 2004 and in July of 2011 the shipwreck of the New Atheism movement due to the Elevatorgate incident occurred. From that point on, the New Atheism movement was hopelessly bogged down in a war against feminists and accusations of Islamophobia. That's only about an 8 year run. And now the New Atheism movement is effectively dead.

In a March 10, 2008 USA Today article Stephen Prothero stated the following regarding the impact of the New Atheism:

Numbers lie, but they also tell tales untrustworthy and otherwise. So the key question stirring around the much discussed U.S Religious Landscape Survey released in late February by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life is what tale does it state about the state of the union.

For some, the story of this survey, based on interviews in multiple languages with more than 35,000 adults, is the strength of American Religion.

Not too long ago, I wrote that American atheism was going the way of the freak show. As books by Christopher Hitchens and other "new atheists" climbed the best seller lists, I caught a lot of flak for that prophecy. But atheist make up only 1.6% of respondents to this survey....[4]

Jesus Christ, the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords, has had over a 2,000 year run of unparalleled success. According to the website Guinness World Records, "A survey by the Bible Society concluded that around 2.5 billion copies [of the Bible] were printed between 1815 and 1975, but more recent estimates put the number at more than 5 billion."

In terms of its geographic distribution, Christianity is the most globally diverse religion (See also: Global Christianity).[5] The Bible has been translated into 518 languages and 2,798 languages have at least some portion of the Bible.[6] In addition, the Christian community is far more evangelistic than the atheist community and Christian missionaries are throughout the world.

Furthermore, as far as the New Atheism movement having "intellectual coattails", Richard Dawkins said about New Atheism, "[O]ur struggle is not so much an intellectual struggle, as a political one: What are we going to do about it?”.[7] Atheist philosopher Dr. Michael Ruse declared concerning Dawkins' book The God Delusion: "The God Delusion makes me embarrassed to be an atheist."[8] The philosopher Antony Flew, who was one of the most prominent atheist academics in the world before adopting deism, said about Dawkins: “The fault of Dawkins as an academic…was his scandalous and apparently deliberate refusal to present the doctrine he appears to think he has refuted in its strongest form”.[9] The works of new atheists often betray an amateurish knowledge of philosophy/religion.[10][11]

In addition, Christianity has an embarrassment of riches when it comes to proof and evidence that it is true (See: Evidence for Christianity). Thunderf00t, using the definition of atheism that encyclopedias of philosophy use, please provide proof and evidence that atheism is true.[12] Thunderf00t, in terms of the definition of atheism, do you have anything against encyclopedias of philosophy - especially prominent ones like the Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy and the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy?

Finally, to a significant degree the New Atheism movement was a reaction to the failure of the secularization thesis (see: New Atheism as a reaction to the failure of the secularization thesis).

If New Atheism was such a promising movement, then how was it going to overcome the trend of global desecularization which has been occurring since the latter part of the 20th century and is expected to continue in the 21st century (see: Desecularization). The agnostic Eric Kaufmann, a scholar on irreligious/religious demographics, told a secular audience in Australia: "The trends that are happening worldwide inevitably in an age of globalization are going to affect us."[13]

Eric Kaufmann, a professor at Birkbeck College, University of London, using a wealth of demographic studies, argues that there will be a significant decline of global atheism in the 21st century which will impact the Western World.[14] See also: Decline of global atheism and Desecularization

On December 23, 2012, Kaufmann wrote:

I argue that 97% of the world's population growth is taking place in the developing world, where 95% of people are religious.

On the other hand, the secular West and East Asia has very low fertility and a rapidly aging population... In the coming decades, the developed world's demand for workers to pay its pensions and work in its service sector will soar alongside the booming supply of young people in the third world. Ergo, we can expect significant immigration to the secular West which will import religious revival on the back of ethnic change. In addition, those with religious beliefs tend to have higher birth rates than the secular population, with fundamentalists having far larger families. The epicentre of these trends will be in immigration gateway cities like New York (a third white), Amsterdam (half Dutch), Los Angeles (28% white), and London, 45% white British. [15]

At a conference Kaufmann said of religious demographic projections concerning the 21st century:

Part of the reason I think demography is very important, at least if we are going to speak about the future, is that it is the most predictable of the social sciences.

...if you look at a population and its age structure now. You can tell a lot about the future. ...So by looking at the relative age structure of different populations you can already say a lot about the future...

...Religious fundamentalism is going to be on the increase in the future and not just out there in the developing world..., but in the developed world as well.[16]

On July 24, 2013, CNS News reported about global atheism:

Atheism is in decline worldwide, with the number of atheists falling from 4.5% of the world’s population in 1970 to 2.0% in 2010 and projected to drop to 1.8% by 2020, according to a new report by the Center for the Study of Global Christianity at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, Mass."[17]

Thnunderf00t isn't the real problem is that you are ignorant about so-called "promising atheist movements"?

Consider the words given below of the American atheist Eddie Tabash about atheist movements in the United States.

Tabash said at the 2010 Michigan Atheists State Convention:

In every generation there has been a promising beginning of a true vanguard movement that will finally achieve widespread public acceptance for nonbelief. Yet, in each generation there has been an ultimately disappointing failure to actually register the naturalistic alternative to supernatural claims in the public consciousness...[18]

For more information, please see: Atheist pessimism about the atheist movement

See also

Notes

  1. Myers, P. Z. (March 31, 2014). "When will this situation improve?". Freethoughtblogs.com/Pharyngula.
  2. How Feminism CASTRATED New Atheism! by Thunderf00t
  3. American Faith: A Work In Progress by Stephen Prothero, USA Today, March 10, 2008, page 11A
  4. Bible translations
  5. Faithless: The politics of new atheism by Steven Kettell
  6. http://www.alternet.org/media/47052?page=entire
  7. Ten years on from that book of atheistic faith, the God Delusion by Mike Taggart
  8. The Routledge Handbook of Contemporary Philosophy of Religion edited by Graham Oppy, Chapter 4, New Atheist Approaches to Religion by Trent Dougherty and Logan Paul Cage, page 52, see: Google books excerpt
  9. http://www.alternet.org/media/47052?page=entire
  10. Multiple references:
  11. Shall the religious inherit the earth - Festival of Dangerous Ideas - Eric Kaufmann
  12. Eric Kaufmann: Shall the Religious Inherit the Earth?, Australian Broadcasting Corporation
  13. 97% of the world's population growth is taking place in the developing world, where 95% of people are religious, Tuesday, April 30, 2013
  14. Eric Kaufmann - Religion, Demography and Politics in the 21st Century
  15. Global Study: Atheists in Decline, Only 1.8% of World Population by 2020
  16. Atheists Speak Up - Eddie Tabash