Monday, January 12, 2009
No, we aren't Pharyngula...
Posted by: Martin
Labels: online frivolity
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I voted from work. I'll vote from home later.ReplyDelete
This is an obviously biased poll to begin with. While the question isn't loaded, the 'No' answer most definitely is:ReplyDelete
"The motto has historical and patriotic significance and does nothing to establish a state religion."
First, the historical significance of the phrase is a poor reason to keep it. Our country had a long history of slavery as well, but we realized it was wrong and eventually put an end to it.
Second, the belief in god has absolutely nothing to do with patriotism. You don’t have to believe in an invisible all powerful being in order to show patriotism for your country. The stigma that atheists aren’t real Americans or aren’t patriotic is getting quite old.
Third, it absolutely does “something” toward establishing a state religion. Using the word “God” excludes any religion that subscribes to no god or to multiple gods. Also most Americans equate the English word God with the Christian god. Not with Allah, not with any other god. So the implication of a “Christian Nation” is very real in that statement. No wonder so many Americans ignorantly state that American was founded on Christianity.
Chris, you nailed it. I was about to do an addendum explaining how misleadingly worded the "No" answer was, and you summed it up much better than I could.ReplyDelete
I agree, Chris. The "No" response is very loaded. It makes you sound like you're a nice agreeable person if you go with that option. The two options might as well read:ReplyDelete
"Yes, I'm whiny and an atheist and don't like it, oh and I hate Jesus"
"No, It's perfectly fine and I'm a good American yay!"
No is still leading by a wide margin. =(ReplyDelete
If you ever notice, its never aReplyDelete
"Should In God we Trust be removed from US currency?
They always have to put a qualifier on the end of each of the answers that skews or might give people pause.
Also I can only assume that there are Christian blogs that are crashing it. 10228255 responses seems unrealistic. 10 Million? Either theres a lot of double voting going on or that poll has been around for a LONG ass time.
As long as we're basing things off of historicity and patriotism, how high does the Constitution rank in those categories? Higher than panicked scapegoating and relinquishment of rights?ReplyDelete
But with 10,000,000+ votes, this might take some reversing.
It, um, doesn't really matter what we do. I'm not against the cause, certainly not, but skewing the poll won't change people's minds so much as say, an article about why it is unconstitutional.ReplyDelete
I'm Aus-bloody-stralian, but I voted no anyway!ReplyDelete
In case anyone's interested, our sunburnt country doesn't have a separation of church and state enshrined in our constitution... and paradoxically we're less troubled by religious nut jobs than you Yanks appear to be. Go figure.
Perhaps tis the level of edjukayshun?ReplyDelete
I agree with -C. While it would be nice if the poll could show stronger support for removing it, it probably won't. The Xtians are very organized and very good at crashing stuff like this. Let's not play the same game. Also, I don't think it'd do much good if we could get the "yes"es higher.ReplyDelete
Martin, are you feeling a little PZ envy?ReplyDelete
That's going to be a hard poll to crash. Good luck!
Looks like it stores your vote as a cookie. I voted on same machine from two browsers... Three machines with multiple browsers each at home... But, yeah, this will be a hard nut to crack.ReplyDelete
Should we really be even bothering to falsely pump up the "yes"es on this stupid biased survey?ReplyDelete
I prefer the time honored approach of blotting out the offending word on every stinking piece of paper money I get with indelible ink...passive aggression I think works better for me (...but I did vote too).ReplyDelete
DagoRed, has anyone definitively found out the legality of that? I can't imagine it'd be a problem. I see bills all the time with phone numbers, etc written on them.ReplyDelete
-C: Crashing polls isn't really about changing hearts and minds, it's about showing how online polls are simply foolish faux-consensus-building exercises designed to stroke the egos of the people who've put up the poll in the first place (who always do so from a biased point of view). And they don't determine what's true or false either. A million people could vote in an online poll to agree that gravity is a myth, but they'll still get a nasty reality check if they decide to step of a tall building.ReplyDelete
Sparrowhawk, it's actually a common myth that you can't damage legal tender. There is no legality issue at all. Once you receive a bill it is your property, not the government's, and you do whatever you want with it. Burn it, use it for toilet paper, write on it, it's all fine. So yeah, it's perfectly legal and as long as 51% of the bill is still there it's still legal tender so it doesn't to anything to render it unusable. I haven't been crossing off the phrase for too long but I do it to every bill that passes through my hands now. Hopefully enough of us will do it that it begins to be common to receive bills like that.ReplyDelete
As for the poll, anytime a poll is put up that could possibly offend the majority they rephrase it to make it look like they agree with the foolish masses. It is distinctly bad with religious polls, but they do it with most polls. The sad thing is, MSNBC is my favorite US news organization and even they are pulling this crap.
On another note, has anyone else watched the Dover, PA thing they did on NOVA? It's very good, but I kept cringing during certain parts of it. There were parts where they would interview people from the town who wanted to fight the ID people. These people kept talking about how they had been accused of being atheists by the pro-ID people. And every single one of them, to a T, said how much of an "insult" it was to them. Rankles....ReplyDelete
I wonder what the poll results would be if the poll asked:ReplyDelete
Do you believe we should destroy the constitution of the united states by having religious fundamentalists dictate what inscriptions should be on our money?
Archaneus pretty much said it, except for one point -- we do not have the right to destroy our own money. According to Title 18, Section 333 of the United States Code, it is still illegal to mutilate money in the US -- but what constitutes mutilation is pretty lenient. You can do anything you want to money as long as it remains 51% intact and the denomination is legible. Writing on money -- or even using an Xacto blade to cut out the offending word -- is legal. The main goal of the anti-mutilation law is to simply keep people from "retiring" paper money without it being accounted for by the government (amount of currency in circulation can affect international exchange rates and inflation, so the government wants to track it). In some countries (like Canada) hoarding cash in your mattress is even illegal because of this accounting issue.ReplyDelete
Actually, Dago, I've just looked up the specific code and there is a key line after the long list of things you're not allowed to do to money:ReplyDelete
Whoever mutilates, cuts, defaces, disfigures, or perforates, or
unites or cements together, or does any other thing to any bank
bill, draft, note, or other evidence of debt issued by any national
banking association, or Federal Reserve bank, or the Federal
Reserve System, with intent to render such bank bill, draft, note,
or other evidence of debt unfit to be reissued, shall be fined
under this title or imprisoned not more than six months, or both.
Sounds like this wording is a way to keep people from getting in trouble for say...accidentally burning their money or ruining it in the wash or something. I would say as long as we're not intending to make the money unusable, we're fine. I may have to start doing this...now if only I wasn't so poor I'm scared to have cash in my pocket and use my debit card all the time.
Yes, we are in complete agreement right down to both feeling quite poor at this moment in time.
When we get cash, we can cross out the whole motto if we want legally, cut it out, or whatever as long as the money remains "spendable." If you feel particularly bored and frustrated over the issue you can even legally Dremel off the phrase from your loose change.
I was merely addressing the point made by Archaneus who said "you do whatever you want with it. Burn it, use it for toilet paper, write on it, it's all fine." Which isn't exactly true according to the law unless we...um....'accidentally' use money as toilet paper.
Too bad for y'all. You are merely the exception (not exceptional either) instead of the rule. Har Har!ReplyDelete
Nal: "I voted from work. I'll vote from home later."
Oh that's how honest people vote.(/sarcasm) Puleeeze!
In a nation overrun with superstition, ignorance and delusion and whose level of education and intellectual sophistication is lagging far behind the rest of the western world, I'm proud to be among the exception.ReplyDelete
You on the other hand, Dan, are merely typical.
Martin, don't feed the troll. A quick perusal of this guy's blog will show you very quickly that there is no point in engaging him on any level about this. He'll just harp at you about the "atheistic" world view not having morals and "darwinism" and any other ill-conceived false epithet you can imagine. Good luck raising your kids without vaccines, Dan.ReplyDelete
Sparrowhawk, Dan and this blog go way back to May 2006. We're all aware of who he is. I usually do ignore him, since he pretty much wore out his limited entertainment value ages ago. But every now and again it's fun to give him a little swat.ReplyDelete
Little Swat? Aw I thought it was more endearing when they were called knuckle rapings. :)
Ah, good times.
I do not want to know what that would entail.