Do Athiests and Agnostics kill people?
It just occurred to me, Cho was a "christian". We've got Muslim extreemists, Fundamentalist extreemists, white supremacists, and cult figures.
But do we have Agnostic assassins? Are there militant Athiests out there? Has a Unitarian ever gone off their nut and started offing people?
Maybe it takes some sense of "this is ABSOLUTELY THE TRUTH" pounded into your head about some mythos, done by people wanting to support the mythos, that allows some to take leave of their sense of right and wrong?
I'm sure I'm being too simplistic about this -- but what do you think?
April 20th, 2007 4:43pm
Sure atheists kill people. Lotta people died under Stalin's rule.
April 20th, 2007 4:45pm
Yeah, too simplistic.
People kills for many reasons. Crazyness (this might include religion ;)), love, fear, despair. Almost any emotion can "make" you kill someone.
Religion might be an useful reason to kill, but almost everytime the REAL reason is to get lands, money or other good.
What proof do you have that he was christian. I dont believe he was. He might have been born christian. But what I have been reading, he wasnt a go to church every sunday kind of guy.
April 20th, 2007 4:46pm
Also, I generally believe that gang bangers aren't christian.
April 20th, 2007 4:47pm
Fair enough -- though I'm not sure using Stalin as a non-extreemist is a good example. I didn't think he was an Athiest so much as a fervent believer in Communism.
But good responses so far. I'm still curious.
April 20th, 2007 5:20pm
I think there is a sort of indirect correlation in that people willing to see any idea as the sole unabashed truth are just such.
There was just bound to be a little overlap in what those truths were.
April 20th, 2007 5:35pm
>What proof do you have that he was christian.
his whiny rants used some vocabulary that would sound very familiar to anyone who listens to Pat Robertson.
April 20th, 2007 6:07pm
Life is boring if we are commited to nothing.
April 20th, 2007 6:27pm
Almost 100% of south korea is evangelical christian. I think I saw some statistic that said that Koreans send more % of their population abroad as missionaries than any other country. So he probably was raised in a christian church. And yes, in his rant he talks about how his massacre makes him like Jesus, suffering because of the sins of others, or something along those lines.
Many people worldwide go to or are associated with some sort of church or mosque or temple. It doesn't really mean anything, it's just a social avenue. Religion is orthogonal to morality and both are orthogonal to insanity.
April 20th, 2007 6:31pm
I was under the impression that Korea was split between Buddhists and evangelical Christians.
Certainly the evangelical Christians there are notoriously aggressive.
April 20th, 2007 7:00pm
Here's the figures from Wikipedia. Slightly under 20% evangelical christian.
"As of 2005, approximately 22 million people, or 46.5% of the South Korean population, express no religious preference. About 10.7 million are Buddhist, while 8.6 million are Protestant Christians, and 5.1 million are Roman Catholics. Adherents of other religions, including Jeungsando and Wonbuddhism, total less than 500,000. The largest Christian church in South Korea, Yoido Full Gospel Church, is located in Seoul and has approximately 780,000 members (2003 estimate). Including Yoido Full Gospel, 11 of the world's 12 largest churches are located in Seoul (see Korean Christianity). South Korea is also the second largest missionary-sending nation on earth, after the United States."
April 20th, 2007 7:06pm
Way to go P.E. good stats there.
April 20th, 2007 7:08pm
Don't forget that he trained to be a priest...
April 20th, 2007 7:17pm
Columbine killers were pretty militantly atheist.
April 20th, 2007 7:54pm
Well at least I remembered the part about the missionary thing.
I'm surprised by the statistics, I was forwarding the numbers that my Korean evangelical friends had given me.
April 20th, 2007 8:01pm
PE messed up his statistics? Nahhh
April 20th, 2007 8:19pm
Religion focuses on extremes: good vs. evil, light vs. darkness, saved or damned, etc. Violence and murder require extremes.
No one commits themselves to kill on just a probable, with reasonable doubt and the consideration of alternative points of view.
This isn't to say that politics or just genuine craziness can't be a polarizing factor, but all other elements factored out, on the whole I'd bet on the religious killing faster than the atheist.
April 21st, 2007 12:24am
I'm Practical Economist, Colm, not Accurate Economist. What do you expect for free, and given that we are currently standing inside an insane asylum?
April 21st, 2007 1:58am
What, nobody remembers the anarchists anymore?
"Anarchists have often been portrayed as dangerous and violent, due mainly to a number of high-profile violent acts, including riots, assassinations, insurrections, and terrorism by some anarchists, as well as persistently negative media portrayals. Some anarchists do not see the destruction of property as a violent act."
Could be just bad press though.
April 21st, 2007 3:45am
To address the OP, I think the deciding factor is whether you are a member of a cult or not.
It doesn’t really matter if the cult is religious or not (remember Bader-Meinhof group, RAF, Japanese Red Army, etc?), or if you are the sole member, like Cho. What matters is does the membership of the cult enable you to feel more worthy than those out side. If it does, then it's really not that difficult to go off shooting everybody else.
April 21st, 2007 4:08am
Anarchists are bad news indeed. I read about this motherfucker named Thomas Jefferson that wrecked all sorts of havoc on the legitimate government, all in the name of anarchy, or as he called it, government by the people, for the people, of the people. Crazy ass lunatic!
April 21st, 2007 8:33am
To answer the OP's question:
Yes, atheists and agnostics kill people. But not in that capacity. There has never been a suicide bomber screaming "For Darwin!" as he pushed the button.
April 21st, 2007 10:45am
>I'm Practical Economist, Colm, not Accurate Economist.
I like to call you the credulous economist. Because you will believe ANYTHING.
April 21st, 2007 12:24pm
From the link,
"Religions aren't all bad is a sold out."
No, of course not. I really don't know why some atheists can ignore all the good deeds people do because of religion. Why?
April 21st, 2007 12:25pm
The link tells that what you are asking is something along these lines: "Heroin isn't all bad. Of course, not. I really don't know why some people who don't take heroin can ignore all the good deeds people do because of heroin. Why?"
April 21st, 2007 3:16pm
I'll agree with his analysis if you can find people do good deeds because of heroin.
April 21st, 2007 3:19pm
Heroin is a specific example he has cited.
One of my friends rationalizes his addictive habits this way: "If you are an alcoholic and you smoke, you can make friends easily with people who do the same. A lot of people having these habits are in positions where they can help you out. So these habits have helped me. I am better off in my career because I have these habits." He'll say this if you show him the statutory warning. He'll say that it isn't all bad.
What if people who are alcoholic meet up because of their habit and form a philanthropic organization? It's not inconceivable. Can we say that alcohol or tobacco isn't all that bad?
April 21st, 2007 3:49pm
"I really don't know why some atheists can ignore all the good deeds people do because of religion."
Because some atheists, like some every other kind of person, are dumbasses.
April 21st, 2007 3:58pm
April 21st, 2007 5:48pm
---"I really don't know why some atheists can ignore all the good deeds people do because of religion."----
Because of religion, or in spite of religion?
April 21st, 2007 5:57pm
Didn't the civil rights movement in America have its origins in the African-American church?
April 21st, 2007 6:02pm
Probably. And the Southern Baptist Convention split from the American Baptists because they thought the Bible condoned slavery.
So the black churches were forces for good and pacifism, while the white churches were preaching that slavery was a good thing.
You do the math.
April 21st, 2007 8:13pm
It seems like some of you are saying humanity would be better off without religion, or at least there'd be less killing if there were no religion.
I doubt it. I think people will always find some 'reason' to kill others.
April 21st, 2007 9:19pm