While many of the remarks left beg for a retort, and many more were just rehashes of previous remarks there are only two that I will deal with for now--both of which were remarks left on my last pre-hiatus post
The first remark I'll address is the one from "James" whose profile is inaccessible. He said that "...Christians are treated unfairly. They are the most singled out and persecuted religion behind perhaps Islam".
Now, I am not sure what country, or even planet James is from, but in this country (United States) as well as the rest of the Western World, saying that Christians are persecuted is like saying that white males are discriminated against---it's impossible. You cannot persecute a majority unless you have some kind of apartheid control over them.
Christians in this country control everything from foreign policy to social programs. They have more power in the legislative, judicial, business, and educational bodies than anyone else, and therefore maintain control over the lives of virtually everyone on the planet in one way or another.
Christians are and have been the biggest persecutors the World has ever seen: the Inquisitions, the witch hunts in Europe, the Crusades, the Ku Klux Klan, Christian support of slavery, and Jerry Falwell are but a few examples of persecution in the name of Christ. A Christian screaming "persecution!!!!!" is similar to Hitler (who claimed to be "...fighting for the work of the Lord."Mein Kampf, Ralph Mannheim, ed., New York: Mariner Books, 1999, p. 65.) calling someone a bigot.
The second remark I would like to address is one left by my friend Dan Marvin.
His comments leave open a lot of replies, but the one I'll address here is:
You all [atheists] seem to be fine and tolerate buddhism (sic), muslims (sic) or yes even satenism (sic) but when it comes to Jesus you get a deep hatred foaming at the mouth and slander whoever brings up the name Jesus Christ.
First of all, of course I tolerate Buddhists, Muslims, etc., just as I tolerate Christians. I just don't tolerate any of their attacks on me, or their baseless mythologies when they threaten to affect me or the ones I love.
Second, I have never slandered any body. Challenging their beliefs, and defending mine is in no way slanderous. Saying that they did something to me that they didn't would, however, be slanderous. As would saying that I have never backed up what I say.
Then there's the issue of hatred for people who bring up the name of Jeebus. I don't hate them, in many ways I pity them. And, in fact, I was married to a devout Catholic whom I loved very much, and to this day maintain correspondence with the Priest who held her funeral mass despite my having told him in a fit of grief at my wife's wake that his god could "go fuck himself if he was so compassionate that he would take my children's mother away from them and me." I have since apologized for that comment, but not the feelings behind it.
Now that I have addressed past comments I will move on with things and only address new challenges.