European history features a long line of atheistic writers. From Denis Diderot to Richard Dawkins, Thomas Hobbes to Christopher Hitchens, atheism has remained a belief system that piques the interest of millions of Europeans.
Nowadays, the atheistic mindset has manifested itself in a laughable manner.
In a classic act of juvenility, Atheist Ireland, an Irish association of atheists, published “25 Blasphemous Quotations” on New Year’s Day in an attempt to elevate the anti-religious remarks that important historical figures have made over the years.
According to a CNN report, the list featured such acclaimed figures as Salman Rushdie, Mohammed, Jesus, Bjork and Mark Twain.
While that seems like a respectable group, being someone religious or not, there are the not-so-credible quotations, like those from comedian George Carlin and musician Frank Zappa. That is where the list moves from an attempt to make a social statement to a ploy to spread an ideology.
For instance, unsurprisingly, the No. 1 quote on the list is from Jesus Christ – an atheist’s favorite target. In Matthew 26:64 of the King James Version of the Bible, Jesus claims to be the Messiah: “Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.”
This is considered blasphemy because Jesus was ultimately crucified for making this claim in that it contradicted Jewish doctrine.
But the group’s goal in placing a verse from Christian scripture atop its blasphemous quotation list is clearly an attempt to demonstrate its disdain for Christianity, first and foremost.
Additionally, this group’s approach is the equivalent of a text message breakup. The list was published on New Year’s Day, marking a new beginning of sorts, and it was posted on the group’s blog.
The only attempts at formality were statements from the group’s Web site, and even those were typical extremist rhetoric: “Despite these quotes being abusive and insulting in relation to matters held sacred by various religions, we unreservedly support the right of these people to have published or uttered them,” the statement read.
This statement is an ideal representation of how corrupt Atheist Ireland and other extremist groups like it are. They strive for sound human rights for their respective people groups, yet are oblivious to the fact that they themselves are repressing groups, or as Atheist Ireland puts it, being “abusive and insulting in relation to matters held sacred by various religions.”
Atheism is to Europe as Christianity is to the United States: many claim it, but few understand the scope of its implications and consequences.
Wyatt Kanyer is a sophomore news-editorial journalism major from Yakima, Wash.