Wednesday, February 16, 2011

A theist's justification for genocide

About 3 months ago, a reader emailed and asked me to respond to this post by a preacher on his website.  I've had a lot going on in my life and have been lazy about responding, sorry.  The post is about capital punishment from a religious point of view. Let's take a look-see, shall we?

"I used the example of the civil war about slavery to highlight what is right in the eyes of God, and what is worth fighting for. It was completely justified."

I'm not an American history scholar, but wasn't the civil war triggered by the secession of the southern states?  I don't know if you could really argue that the north was going to war to free the slaves.  They were going to keep their country from falling apart.  It's irrelevant at any rate, because the more important point that Bible-Boy is ignoring is the Bible's explicit support for slavery, both in the New and Old Testaments.  It doesn't seem to come right out and condemn it.  Where is the Bible verse which says, "Slavery is wrong.  Do not take people as slaves.  Yahweh doesn't approve."?  Even if it did say such a thing, it would just be another example of the Bible contradicting itself.  The Bible was even used as a defense for the institution of slavery, and rightly so, during the American Civil War years.  The author of the post is certainly not justified in claiming that abolition of slavery was right in the eyes of the god in his book.  As usual, we find people projecting their own beliefs and morals onto the god(s) they believe in.  This man doesn't believe that slavery is morally acceptable, so he claims that his god doesn't either, despite what the book might actually say.

Then we get into this:

"I just read a great article called "Killing the Canaanites" by Clay Jones in the CRI Journal so this is fresh in my mind. Was killing the Canaanites justified? Yes. Completely. We would be hard pressed not to deliver a verdict of capital punishment on them even in these days. Capital punishment is completely justified and I encourage it as a solution against evil. The Canaanites were a very wicked bunch."

Remember, Christianity is the religion of love, forgiveness and redemption.  Bible-Boy has clearly stated that an entire race of people needs to be killed, including the innocent members, for the "evils" of some members of the group.  And it is justified.  There are no trials necessary, no attempt to weed out the good from the bad required.  Kill 'em all and let the gods sort 'em out!  That's the thing with religion.  Might makes right.  The mighty will decide what is evil, and kill all of those who are evil.  This is exactly the reasoning used by Islamic fundamentalists to kill and wage jihad.  Religious justification for murder, all based on their imaginations.

"From what I read they were rampant incestuous, adulterous, idolatrous, child sacrificing people."

Child-sacrificing people?  You mean they killed children?  Like your god does (repeatedly) in the Bible?  Like your mighty holy warriors did in the story, when they rolled through town and killed everybody, including the innocent children?  Are you also claiming that adulterers need to be put to death?  And is that the Ray Comfort definition of adultery, taken from your Bible, in which any man who looks lustfully upon a woman has committed adultery?  Are we killing for thought-crimes now?  As for idolatry, at least a billion people on Earth worship idols of some kind.  Depending on your definition of idol, it could include well over half of the people on Earth.  Are they to be put to death by you and your religious crew?

"Not only did they encourage homosexuality, but bestiality! They deserved to die."

Now he wants the gays to be killed, too.  Along with anybody mentally ill enough to do it with an animal.

"It was not divine genocide, it was capital punishment."

We didn't commit genocide, we only carried out capital punishment against an entire race of people.  I can hardly see how one could call that genocide.  Capital punishment?  Even for the children?  You know, besides the fact that most civilised countries have already outlawed capital punishment, I don't know of  any civilised country at all that allows capital punishment against children, especially not for the crimes of the adults surrounding them.  Capital punishment, whether right or wrong, is given to the people who actually committed the crimes!  You sir, are a MONSTER!  Your god, who you believe sanctions this, is a MONSTER!  If your god were real, it would not be welcome in a civilised discussion of justice in a civilised country.  It would only be welcome at the stoning of a woman in Persia for adultery.  You are a disgusting individual, and to be perfectly honest, the sooner you die, the better off we'll all be.

Here's an idea....  if your god hates these things so much, why don't you let IT kill these people?  Why does it need YOU and your scumbag kind to help it?  Why does this impotent omnipotent being never do anything for itself?  If it wants these people to die, let it take care of them.  Maybe if they don't all die immediate horrible deaths, it's a sign that either a) your god doesn't mind these things and possibly even endorses them, like slavery, or b) it doesn't exist at all.  If a god only acts through the actions of humans, how can we distinguish between those acts and acts which are committed by humans alone?

I'd even argue that if there was such a thing as a god and it was killing people for thought-crimes, etc, that we should do all we can to fight that god, possibly finding a way to neutralise or kill it.  I don't care what a god wants, slaughter of entire villages (ie. genocide) is WRONG.  I stand against your god, or any other god, which would try to do such a thing.

"In the past I would say it was harsh and decry the actions as genocide but it would be only to justify my own sinfulness.

God hates sin, as an Atheist I did not. My authority reference has dramatically changed for the better. Thank the Lord."

Yes, thank the fucking lord!

This post is especially ironic considering all of those religious believers out there who argue that atheism leads to genocide.  Sorcery is bad, but Jesus didn't do sorcery, he did miracles.  Genocide is bad, but my god doesn't do genocide, it does capital punishment.  Fucking morons!


ANTZILLA said...


Your articulation is much appreciated.

ANTZILLA said...

How much do you want to bet the preacher will not read Admins post?

I don't follow debates around the web, however I would love to see
"debunking atheist Dan+++" VS "Atheist Propaganda Admin"

Admin said...

I don't think Dan and I have anything to discuss. If he thinks putting children to death for the homosexual practices of their parents is a good thing, then the conversation wouldn't go anywhere. I'd probably also begin with challenging him to demonstrate that we should care what the Bible says, and we all know how that would end up.

ANTZILLA said...

true, true.

My guess it would go somthing like

Dan: the childern deserved to die. (absure bible passage sighted)

Admin: your a monster

Dan: how can you be certain about anything? Then [cut and paste from Sye T website] + {bible passages}, then stupid smiley face :7

Reynold said...

That's one way of putting it, Ant...

I don't think that he's a preacher though. Not that it matters; I've heard that William Lane Craig also defends this kind of genocide, even while claiming that it's the biblical teachings that give us our sense of "morality" that quails at the idea of genocide in the first place.

So whom does God wrong in commanding the destruction of the Canaanites? Not the Canaanite adults, for they were corrupt and deserving of judgement. Not the children, for they inherit eternal life. So who is wronged? Ironically, I think the most difficult part of this whole debate is the apparent wrong done to the Israeli soldiers themselves. Can you imagine what it would be like to have to break into some house and kill a terrified woman and her children? The brutalizing effect on these Israeli soldiers is disturbing.

But then, again, we’re thinking of this from a Christianized, Western standpoint.

Then there's guys like Vincent Cheung.

I'll let you find the money quote yourself.

And another example, with Ray Comfort's lackey, Fish with Trish.

ANTZILLA said...

I'm thinking that the whole Canaanites story is propaganda. Even if this actually did happen, I would question the recounts of the genocidal maniacs.

Dan +++ the author of the post argued "the are no coincidences"
and that the fact that the Canaanites lost the 'war' was proof the Israelites were 'enacting gods will'

Survival of the most genocidal faithful.

Magnamune said...

Wow. Woe is the society in which that guy lives. Wait...

I try to think of an appropriate way of dealing with people like this, but I only ever come up with a coin toss betweeen mental intitution and death. Despite the help a mental health pofessional could bestow, I just don't think there are enough of them to cope with all of these types.

But then again, whose to say that martyrdom is really beneficial either. Maybe we should launch them all into space... maybe headed for Mars, or something.

I just don't know what to do...

ANTZILLA said...

All we can do is make our disgust heard.

Magnamune said...

I had no idea about this ANTZILLA. I thank you very much. Now to let my 4 followers know about it.

crites evidentia logica

trashmaster46 said...


mark said...

Killing an entire people due to the sins of a few is not only immoral, it is also a war crime according to the UN and according the Court of International justice.

According to the Bible, it's ok tho.

Anonymous said...

Ah ha ! Reynold gets a prize.
Embedded in one of his replies is the key to this whole mess: "the children inherit eternal life"

This is a huge "out" for christians and other nutjobs. This thing that because children are "sin free" it is somehow acceptable to kill them because they get to go 'home' to god ?? Explicatives don't exist to cover how angry that makes me.

How does that play with the abortion thing ?

Christians are mentally ill.