Today’s letter-to-the-editor appears in the Northwest Florida Daily News of Fort Walton Beach, Florida. It’s titled The majority rules. The newspaper has a comments feature.
Because the writer isn’t a politician, preacher, or other public figure, we won’t embarrass or promote him by using his full name. His first name is James. Excerpts from his letter will be enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary and some bold font for emphasis. Here we go!
Your July 25 article, “School Board asked to stop prayer at meetings,” warrants a rebuttal.
We can’t find that article, but here’s one in the same paper from a couple of days later: School Board makes no decisions on prayer before meetings. The school board can’t figure out what to do. Ah, but James has the answer. He says:
If anyone feels violated by public prayer, they have the option of excusing themselves. Although it’s taking a beating lately, America is a democracy and a Christian nation where the majority rules.
Yeah — if you don’t like it, then get out! By the way, James never specifically says he’s a creationist, but we think it’s a safe bet. Let’s read on:
The latest research shows that about 78 percent of adults (247 million) identify themselves as Christian. In comparison, the next largest religions in America are Judaism and Islam. Therefore, including the remaining followers of Buddhism, Taoism, etc., atheism in America represents only about 2 percent of the population.
We don’t know where James gets his statistics. This recent article at the website of Pew Research — America’s Changing Religious Landscape — compares poll results from 2007 and 2014. It says the percentage of Christians (all denominations) in the US has dropped from 78% to around 70%. The number affiliated with non-Christian religions has jumped from 4.7% to 5.9%. Those describing themselves as atheist, agnostic or “nothing in particular” has jumped from 16.1% to 22.8%.
The number of atheists in the US is at least ten times greater than James’ estimate, but that’s not important. James is still in the majority — and the majority rules! He continues:
Atheists deny the existence of God simply because they believe that to do otherwise is an intellect defect. I pray that someday before they die, atheists’ self-centered egos will diminish to the point they can accept the reality: Mortal man will never have the ability to comprehend the powers of God (i.e., the universe, the miracle of birth and all the others).
James hopes you will accept that reality — before it’s too late! Here’s more:
Until atheists can accept that fact, they will be stuck with their attempts to explain it all away with, “No, God does not exist, it just happened.”
Yes, that’s a pathetic explanation. James’ explanation is so much better! Moving along:
Creditable research clearly shows that at least half of all scientists and other scholars do believe in God.
We don’t know about those “other scholars,” but Pew Research has this article from 2009: Scientists and Belief, which says:
A survey of scientists who are members of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, conducted by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press in May and June 2009, finds that members of this group are, on the whole, much less religious than the general public. Indeed, the survey shows that scientists are roughly half as likely as the general public to believe in God or a higher power. According to the poll, just over half of scientists (51%) believe in some form of deity or higher power; specifically, 33% of scientists say they believe in God, while 18% believe in a universal spirit or higher power.
James wasn’t too far off. Then he says:
In fact, there is research that indicates the smarter the scientists become, the more likely they are to believe.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! We don’t know where that comes from. Anyway, this is James’ thundering, theocratic conclusion:
Finally, at what point do we, the 78 percent, tell the 2 percent they can go to hell if they choose to do so, but the rest of us Christians will continue worshiping our God?
Some of the statistics James relies on appear to be inaccurate, but that’s not the important thing — it’s his attitude. Rather revealing, isn’t it?
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