Sunday, Oct 23rd

Last update05:20:13 AM GMT

You are here News Of Special Interest Kiss me, I'm an atheist

Kiss me, I'm an atheist

E-mail Print PDF

atheistIn Pope Francis’ Christmas address, he extended a surprise olive branch to atheists. But the reach was backhanded. “I invite even nonbelievers to desire peace,” he offered. Even nonbelievers? How magnanimous.

Religious tolerance has increased dramatically over the last few decades, at least in the United States. But one group remains behind the pack: atheists. A 2012 Gallup poll asked Americans if they would vote for a well-qualified presidential candidate nominated by their party if the person happened to be “X.” Catholic? Ninety-four percent said yes. Jewish? Ninety-one percent. Mormon? Eighty percent. Muslim? Fifty-eight percent. Trailing them all — and well behind blacks, women, Hispanics, and gays and lesbians — were atheists, at 54 percent.

Dislike of atheists might be surprising, given that we are a small and largely invisible demographic, making up less than 5 percent of the U.S. We are not known for terrorist attacks, secret cabals or any particular pageantry — we are not even a particularly cohesive group. As the comedian Ricky Gervais once wrote, “Saying atheism is a belief system is like saying not going skiing is a hobby.” But recent research has identified the primary source of prejudice against atheists: It is the distrust of those who are not scared of a watchful God. And the research suggests that current attempts to give atheists a PR makeover are severely misguided.
The source of prejudice

A 2006 paper by the sociologist Penny Edgell and her colleagues began to outline the nature of the anti-atheist bias. They found that people associate atheists with either the low end of the social hierarchy (common criminals) or the high end (cultural elitists). What these two groups purportedly share is extreme self-interest and lack of concern for the common good.


Most Recent Related Stories...

AT&T Agrees to Buy Time Warner for Around $80 Billion

ATT mergerAT&T has agreed to buy Time Warner for more than $80 billion, a person briefed on...

Japanese are working themselves to death--literally

Japanese working themselves to deathMatsuri Takahashi was just 24 years old and the graduate of prestigious Tokyo University when she...

Why is the Ivanka Trump clothing line boycott growing? You are what you wear

Ivanka brand boycott growingLike many women who have watched sexual harassment allegations against Trump unfold, [Shannon] Coulter was reminded...

Samsung scraps Galaxy Note 7 over fire concerns

Glaxy 7 Samsung Electronics Co Ltd (005930.KS) scrapped its flagship Galaxy Note 7 smartphone on Tuesday less than...
America's # 1 Enemy
Tee Shirt
& Help Support!
TVNL Tee Shirt
Conserve our Planet
& Help Support!
Get your 9/11 & Media
Deception Dollars
& Help Support!
The Loaded Deck
The First & the Best!
The Media & Bush Admin Exposed!