Saturday, December 6, 2008

A sincere mea culpa

I think when you are wrong, the direct approach is the best.  So to that end, I want to apologize for my last post on the FFRF sign in the Washington State Capitol.  After reviewing that post, it clearly has a whiney, "look at how mean the christians are" tone.  When I wrote it, it seemed justifiable; but after reading Martin's post over at the Atheist Experience, I realize that it is FFRF's sign that is the issue.  It reads in part, "Religion is but myth and superstition that hardens hearts and enslaves minds."  Whatever my belief regarding the accuracy of that message, this the wrong venue and the wrong time to deliver it.  At a time when the prevailing opinion is that christmas is under attack, to put up a sign that aggressively denigrates the opposing position is counterproductive and mean spirited.

So I say to my christian friends, celebrate the birth of your saviour; and to everyone regardless of your faith, enjoy your families, be good to each other, practice charity and kindness, and have a very merry christmas.

Be Well,



Shawn Michel de Montaigne said...

I don't know what you posted, but your generosity here is to be commended. It is an act, shall we say, of grace. Well done.

Best to you today.

Sina said...

I don't think there was anyhting wrong with that post. It is kind of annoying that someone stole the sign and no one gives a damn. If someone stole the ceramic baby Jesus there would be hell to pay.

F#$% you ceramic Jesus!

ScottE said...

I fully understand what FFRF is trying to achieve. Ultimately, we don't want equal time for our views on public property. We want no religious displays whatsoever. The display is a good way to draw attention to the situation and point out the problem that occurs when government allows religious points of view a place of preference in the public square. FFRF was being intentionally provocative.

I stand by what I wrote in the original post, since it represents how I felt at that moment. However, in reexamining the situation, I think the language of the display is unnecessary. The point could easily have been made without resorting to the underhanded insult. Why would freethinkers who value reason above all else resort to such petty backbiting? I think it reinforced for many religious individuals, for right or wrong, the idea that atheists and freethinkers want to eliminate religion altogether. And in that, I think the message missed the mark.