Atheists Need to Fact-Check Better (Reblog)

Ran across this post over at The Musings of Thomas Verenna, and I think he makes a great point. He states that the image below is something that’s going around Facebook right now, and what it claims is simply incorrect.

Ishtar image

If you’d like to see all the reasons why he finds fault with this image, check out the link to his blog. On a broader note, I think this is an issue we non-believers need to take very seriously. There really are religious people who are open-minded enough to consider our point of view. So when we have an opportunity to tell them why we don’t believe in their particular religion, we can’t waste our chance giving false information. Because as soon as they realize that the info we’ve given them is inaccurate or not the full picture, they’ll dismiss every other point we made.

Many of us who don’t believe were raised with religion, and it took us a long time to dismantle the false view of the world we had been taught. We, above all people, should value truth and honesty. Let’s make sure we keep each other straight so we don’t become guilty of the same kinds of misinformation, inaccuracy, and group-think that plague most of our religious friends.

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13 thoughts on “Atheists Need to Fact-Check Better (Reblog)”

  1. You make an excellent point, which is why I usually cross-check sources for information before posting an article or adding a section to my book. Unfortunately, most religious writers simply quote their “holy book” as the be-all and end-all source for what they claim.

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  2. Both ‘sides’ need to avoid these sort of “meme myths”.

    But, also, what’s the big deal even if this was true? Everyone knows Jesus wasn’t born on 24/25 December, and the christians often tried to “christianise” previous pagan culture and locations, so that churches in the UK were often built on previous Celtic holy sites and Easter and other christian festivals took over from previous pagan festivals.

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  3. Yes, I saw this a day or so ago and I immediately thought, “Wait a moment’.
    Best leave the telling of lies to the Christians. This is one skill we do NOT want to adopt, right?

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  4. Very well said Nate! And that’s what I like about your blog – your sincerity for seeking what really is true bleeds onto the virtual screen!

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  5. Nate,

    I think you have a valuable insight in that you both have the perspective of looking from the inside as well as the outside of a faith community.

    Because your blog is a virtual record of your transition from believer to non-believer I was wondering have family gradually over time opened up more to discussion and conversation because of this blog?

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  6. Thanks, Ryan.

    Unfortunately, no, discussion with my family hasn’t opened any more — at least not about these religious issues. With a couple of my family members, casual conversation has gotten marginally better, but it’s still awkward. It’s usually just whatever’s necessary to coordinate visits for them with our kids.

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  7. You wrote: “There really are religious people who are open-minded enough to consider our point of view. So when we have an opportunity to tell them why we don’t believe in their particular religion, we can’t waste our chance giving false information. Because as soon as they realize that the info we’ve given them is inaccurate or not the full picture, they’ll dismiss every other point we made.”

    Spot on.

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  8. Although maybe they won’t dismiss EVERY other point you make. Rather, they will see you as a religious partisan for your particular religion, which just happens to be atheism.

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