Tuesday, March 06, 2007


Jesse Lava writes:

Surely, tens (if not hundreds) of millions of Americans believe Christianity is the one truth faith -- and, therefore, that "there are inferior religions."

This is, of course, true and people are welcome to have that belief. But it's also why the backlash against "arrogant" or "militant" atheists we see is absurd. We live in a society where large numbers of people believe they have "the one true faith." And a nontrivial subset of those people think part of that one true faith involves proselytizing and convincing the rest of us to join up. All fine, too. But the belief that you have the "one true faith," while you're welcome to it, is certainly more "intolerant" than someone like Dawkins or Harris calling you a complete moron for believing that. An atheist thinking your* beliefs are absurd is milder than your belief that all beliefs not yours are both absurd and potentially condemning someone to eternal damnation.

I'm not a proselytzing atheist myself, but they're no more intolerant than millions of religious people who, as they are entitled, think they have the "one true faith."

*Not ascribing that belief to Lava.