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Author Topic: OMG  (Read 673 times)

Offline Bill Chapman

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OMG
« on: June 28, 2019, 06:49:13 AM »
I SPENT A DAY WATCHING ATHEIST TV -- AND IT WAS HORRIFYING
https://www.salon.com/2014/08/09/i_spent_a_day_watching_atheisttv_and_it_was_horrifying/

DANIEL D'ADDARIO
AUGUST 9, 2014 10:00PM (UTC)

The Atheist streaming network apparently learned nothing from Neil deGrasse Tyson's success

The Christian right has some things figured out. These days, Christian entertainment isn't just the didactic "700 Club" -- it includes spectacles as high-flying as History's miniseries "The Bible" or as wacky as GSN's "American Bible Challenge." If these entertainments, relying as they do on knowledge of the source material, do any converting, that's a fringe benefit; they exist to further galvanize the faithful in their beliefs.

American atheists haven't learned from these projects, it seems. The recently-launched AtheistTV, which is available over the Internet and through the Roku streaming device, frames itself as an outreach project of sorts. It consists of acquired programming (for instance, from the Richard Dawkins Institute), with call-in shows and broadcasts of speeches and rallies. All of these set forth the tenets of atheism -- there's no "American Bible Challenge"-style tomfoolery here.

And yet after watching four hours of its programming and even despite my own lack of religious belief, I find it hard to imagine that even a casual nonbeliever would tune in, let alone someone on the fence about the existence of a higher power. AtheistTV adheres to nasty stereotypes about atheism -- smugness, gleeful disregard for others' beliefs -- to a degree that's close to unwatchable.

When I first tuned in at 2 p.m. on Thursday, the closing credits for a show were scrolling, set to a parody hymn that rhymed "Don't be offended by a word to the wise" with "There's no real estate in the skies." Then, after several seconds of dead air, came a prerecorded call-in show called "The Atheist Experience," whose co-host Matt Dillahunty, wearing a black Hawaiian-style shirt decorated with flames and infinity symbols, needed no prompting to begin his show with the Biblical story of God asking Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac. "This is just absolutely horrible," said Dillahunty. "And it’s the type of thing we get when we begin with the idea that the Bible is true and good, and you run into absurdities."

What absurdities these were the viewer would have to fill in for himself; there was no extrapolation from this story in terms of what social ills have happened in the name of God, no sense that Dillahunty was bothered by people following the Bible for any reason other than that he thinks it's nuts to rely on a book for wisdom and guidance. "I don't worship any being," he said, "though I respect a lot of people and a lot of fictional characters."

"If you know why your God is so stupid," he said, "feel free and call us."

The show did field one call, from a young man whose thoughts were so muddled (he was introduced as devout, then explained he was questioning his faith, then said he'd been dead for a week, then said he often thought the world would be better off after he died) that it's not really fair to criticize. But it's worth noting that Dillahunty repeatedly suggested he was dealing with a prank caller but refused to disengage and make time for a caller who might have done a better job of representing himself; it was more important to score rhetorical points off someone clearly not equipped to play.

AtheistTV frames atheism as a perpetual reaction against a conquering force. And that reaction isn't reasoned debate. It's unattractive nihilism. After the second broadcast of a single "Atheist Experience" episode, the channel showed a 2012 rally in Washington, D.C.; speakers consistently described a future in which all Americans would join the movement, a future that they'd get to by mocking and hassling the beliefs of others. One hardly needs to be religious to see the rhetorical flaws in Andy Shernoff, the frontman of punk band The Dictators, describing himself as "a little like Martin Luther King" before asking the audience "Ready for some sarcasm? Ridiculous ideas need to be mocked." That Shernoff's performance indulges straight-up homophobia and misogyny in a frankly mean-spirited song about giving Jesus oral sex is just a fringe benefit of being a radical truth-teller who doesn't care whom one offends. Beyond the catharsis of mockery, what can AtheistTV offer? What alternative does it provide? Leaving aside even the question of winning over believers, how can it even keep atheists watching if it's just a perpetual drumbeat of calling Jesus "the zombie Jew"?

After the rally broadcast, in the final episode of "The Atheist Experience" I watched, both hosts recommended that viewers tune into "Cosmos," on Fox. That show, starring the scientist Neil deGrasse Tyson, made the argument that the religious right had deleterious effects on the world by using concrete examples from history. The show also inspired awe by presenting something in which to believe -- the majesty of the universe, the wonders of science. It wasn't reacting to any doctrine; it was doing something all its own.

AtheistTV has a similar opportunity to inspire, and instead feeds its viewers a diet of scorn. The "Atheist Experience's" new co-host, Don Baker, pivoted from talking "Cosmos" to introducing today's topic: "I’m talking again about the failures of Christianity. I’m just scratching the surface -- a lot of failure! So much fail. But today I’m going to talk about Christianity’s dependence on ignorance.

“Christianity requires ignorance -- and con games require ignorance too.”

I shut it off. A game of three-card-monte may be frustrating, but one can keep walking by. A person shouting at you on the subway is far more irritating. -Daniel D'Addario


--------------------------------------------
From the 'To Each His Own' department
--------------------------------------------

'Saved'  Shelley Segal

'Leaning on the Everlasting Arms'  Church of God Choir

'True Grit'   Leaning on the Everlasting Arms/Iris Dement

--------------------------------------------------
From the 'Good News/Bad News' department
--------------------------------------------------
The Good News: Satan is dead
The Bad News: So is God

'Preacher'  The Saint of Killers shoots The Prince of Darkness

'Preacher'  The Saint of Killers beats God to the draw

'Preacher'  Preacher Jesse Custer gives God a holy shit-kickin'


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« Last Edit: February 19, 2020, 08:55:15 PM by Bill Chapman »

Offline Jerry Freeman

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Re: OMG
« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2019, 04:04:07 PM »
Summary from the article....
Quote
“Christianity requires ignorance -- and con games require ignorance too.”
Anyone....Why is just Christianity slammed there? Why not Islam for instance? Or Buddhists or even Satanists?
Is it really all that gullible to think that there could actually be salvation to be found in this life?

Offline Bill Chapman

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Re: OMG
« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2019, 01:46:00 AM »
Summary from the article.... Anyone....Why is just Christianity slammed there? Why not Islam for instance? Or Buddhists or even Satanists?
Is it really all that gullible to think that there could actually be salvation to be found in this life?

The article is pointing out a few things about atheism
« Last Edit: December 16, 2019, 06:14:03 AM by Bill Chapman »

Offline Jerry Freeman

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Re: OMG
« Reply #3 on: December 18, 2019, 02:12:33 AM »
Quote
Neil Gorsuch appears to validate "War on Christmas" conspiracy during "Fox & Friends" appearance
Associate Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch, who was appointed by President Donald Trump, appeared to validate the dubious Fox News claim that there is a “War on Christmas” during a rare  live interview Tuesday with Ainsley Earhardt, the co-host of “Fox & Friends.”  Gorusch appeared to dive into the narrative about an alleged “War on Christmas” when he pointedly smiled and wished Earhardt a “Merry Christmas” at the top of the segment on the president's favorite morning show.
“I love that you say that,” Earhardt responded after she returned the greeting.
Quote
Amee Vanderpool @girlsreallyrule

Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch just appeared on Fox and Friends this morning, making a point to parrot the "Merry Christmas" talking point of the GOP. If he's willing to go on Fox and throw a shout out to Republican narratives, what else is he willing to do?
I didn't know that saying Merry Christmas was a "Republican narrative." What else is she willing to say?   :-\
Videos--- https://www.salon.com/2019/12/17/neil-gorsuch-appears-to-validate-war-on-christmas-conspiracy-during-fox-friends-appearance/

Offline Bill Chapman

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Re: OMG
« Reply #4 on: December 21, 2019, 07:43:06 AM »
I didn't know that saying Merry Christmas was a "Republican narrative." What else is she willing to say?   :-\
Videos--- https://www.salon.com/2019/12/17/neil-gorsuch-appears-to-validate-war-on-christmas-conspiracy-during-fox-friends-appearance/

This has nothing to do with the OP

Offline Tim Nickerson

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Re: OMG
« Reply #5 on: December 21, 2019, 09:06:46 PM »
This has nothing to do with the OP

I disagree.

Offline Bill Chapman

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Re: OMG
« Reply #6 on: December 22, 2019, 04:49:25 AM »
I disagree.

It's about the author's reaction to atheist online-propaganda methods
 

 

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