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Many atheists don't seem sympathetic to poor.


mt774

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How can a well-educated, well-spoken intellectual understand the pain of that person in the ghetto who suffers from mostly let-downs and hardship.

Well firstly, those two sets of traits aren't mutually exclusive. Albeit unusual, coming from a "ghetto" does not automatically prevent you from being well-educated or well spoken.

 

Second there is the simple human concept of empathy. You don't have to experience something first hand to understand how bad it can be. I've never been in anything more than a fist fight, but from talking to my friend in the marines I know that war is hell, despite having never seen a firearm outside of a policeman's hand or in a military parade.

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How can a well-educated, well-spoken intellectual understand the pain of that person in the ghetto who suffers from mostly let-downs and hardship.

Well firstly, those two sets of traits aren't mutually exclusive. Albeit unusual, coming from a "ghetto" does not automatically prevent you from being well-educated or well spoken.

 

Second there is the simple human concept of empathy. You don't have to experience something first hand to understand how bad it can be. I've never been in anything more than a fist fight, but from talking to my friend in the marines I know that war is hell, despite having never seen a firearm outside of a policeman's hand or in a military parade.

This.

 

I've been told that I should go to Oxbridge when I leave college - however I live with a single parent who works at a pub. Not exactly a detached, top hat wearing bourgeoisie. I don't claim to be street, but not for one minute do I think that those richer than me can't understand the common struggles of lack of money. Robinski has already summed that up better than I.

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How can a well-educated, well-spoken intellectual understand the pain of that person in the ghetto who suffers from mostly let-downs and hardship.

The better question is: Why would they want to?

How does that benefit them?

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I just feel those atheist speakers are too harsh in tone when attacking ppl for believing in god. When you are down in life, have little money, feeling hopeless etc, those people in "ghetto" want to get some comfort from the church or mosque and they don't need a Hitchens or Dawkins loudly asserting "THERE IS NO GOd!! IT'S A FAIRYTALE!!"

 

When some ppl have no hope, why those atheist wish to take away the last crumb of comfort for them with such an aggressive harsh tone? do they wish them more misery???

 

 

and can you guys answer my concern about the Jesus stickers; they are stuck on lampposts and walls in the "ghetto" areas but not in suburban/upper-class ones. Why?

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and can you guys answer my concern about the Jesus stickers; they are stuck on lampposts and walls in the "ghetto" areas but not in suburban/upper-class ones. Why?

Because vandalism is more socially acceptable in less affluent areas. Richer areas will be faster to get stuff like that removed, whether by the government, privately or even doing it themselves. Places that have traditionally been "clean" of stuff like that are much more likely to stay un-vandalised as there is little effort involved in cleanup and it's also a much bigger step mentally for a potential vandal to be the first person to do it, rather than being just another person doing it.

 

And I've already made my opinion on Dawkins clear. The man is a dick and more of an antitheist than an atheist.

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Faith is Faith for a reason, and the right reasoning is what's best. Me thinks. Again, conviction is nearly a sacred belief too. Don't trod on another man's Holy beliefs. Now am I saying that about terrorism and extremism? NO, absolutely not

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Many atheists don't seem sympathetic to poor.

 

Why so many atheists come from high-class background and schooling; and hardly any are from poor or inner-city environments???

 

I noticed that all the atheist public speakers that debate with religious figures all seem to be from good income background. I am speaking of the likes of Christopher Hitchens, Richard Dawkins and Daniel Dennet...

 

Also, did you guys notice that those people living in deprived areas are always religious, hardly any atheist in the poorest areas of UK and US cities....

I disagree.

 

I grew up poor and I am an atheist. My wife grew up even more poor, and she is one of those outspoken atheists.

 

The reason people like Dawkins and the like are such good public speakers on the subject is because of their schooling. I'm more likely to believe someone who sounds smart as opposed to believing someone who sounds like they are just rambling street talk.

 

I also happen to be from a very urban/heavily religious city.

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Really??? I think you must not have lived in predominantly black poor areas in UK then, if you go past a church on Sunday in those areas you will see it very full. If you notice anytime a black family looses somebody to a death; a member of that family will always come out in an interview and say something like "he's in a better place now" "the lord is looking after him".

I think you'll find I have. It's all dependent on origin and community. If you look at many of the more recent African immigrants, then yes, you will see plenty of religious activity, but amongst second, third and fourth generation immigrants? Just isn't true. I mean, why equate skin colour with poverty? There are plenty of comparatively poor, white, British families, and there's very little religious activity in these groups. Numerically, they heavily out-number poor individuals of other ethnic groups.

 

 

When 50 Cent survived his shooting, he credited god with his survival, and of course he comes from a family with very religious grandparents.

So? That doesn't mean anything, really. It doesn't support the idea that religious people are more compassionate, as he's about the least compassionate person in the public view.

 

 

and i just feel like atheists can't understand that feeling for religion in those environments, how can somebody like Dawkins relate, if he has never been from those same struggles?

Why not? There are plenty of moral atheist philosophers from very poor backgrounds. Ayn Rand? Her family's entire wealth was taken by the Bolsheviks and was reduced to living in exile in the Crimea. Daniel Dennett? For most of his life, he was brought up by a single parent in a relatively poor environment after his father's death in the Second World War. Albert Camus? His father was a pauper killed during the First World War. Simon de Beauvoir? His family lost all their wealth in the years before 1914. John Anderson? He required a bursary to go to university.

 

As I said before, your basic premise is built on falsehoods.

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Depends, really.

 

The way I see it, if you are raised poor and become - well, not wealthy per say, but 'normal' in terms of income - through hard work, sacrifices and the like, then you're less likely to attribute it to a deity. You realize that you're the one who did all the work, not your main religious figure. If you started out average or wealthy and then became poor, you will often be resentful (Where is my god NOW?!?) and will remain or become an atheist and probably pass those beliefs on to your children. But if you're living day by day, and extremely poor with no foreseeable future, you need to have something to live for. Most people choose religion. And when you go from rags to riches through good fortune, you are very likely to give God all the credit.

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Really??? I think you must not have lived in predominantly black poor areas in UK then, if you go past a church on Sunday in those areas you will see it very full. If you notice anytime a black family looses somebody to a death; a member of that family will always come out in an interview and say something like "he's in a better place now" "the lord is looking after him".

I think you'll find I have. It's all dependent on origin and community. If you look at many of the more recent African immigrants, then yes, you will see plenty of religious activity, but amongst second, third and fourth generation immigrants? Just isn't true. I mean, why equate skin colour with poverty? There are plenty of comparatively poor, white, British families, and there's very little religious activity in these groups. Numerically, they heavily out-number poor individuals of other ethnic groups.

 

 

When 50 Cent survived his shooting, he credited god with his survival, and of course he comes from a family with very religious grandparents.

So? That doesn't mean anything, really. It doesn't support the idea that religious people are more compassionate, as he's about the least compassionate person in the public view.

 

 

and i just feel like atheists can't understand that feeling for religion in those environments, how can somebody like Dawkins relate, if he has never been from those same struggles?

Why not? There are plenty of moral atheist philosophers from very poor backgrounds. Ayn Rand? Her family's entire wealth was taken by the Bolsheviks and was reduced to living in exile in the Crimea. Daniel Dennett? For most of his life, he was brought up by a single parent in a relatively poor environment after his father's death in the Second World War. Albert Camus? His father was a pauper killed during the First World War. Simon de Beauvoir? His family lost all their wealth in the years before 1914. John Anderson? He required a bursary to go to university.

 

As I said before, your basic premise is built on falsehoods.

Just because there is not much religious activity does not meann they are atheist. Every poor/disadvantaged person white or black i have spoken to has said they believing in god, they might not attend a church or show much interest in debating or learning about the religions, but they still believe. I have known many ppl who have never even read the bible but still believe in god.

 

I can say truthfully that i have never met anybody from the "ghetto" who had that harsh, anti-god attitude that many atheist have.

 

I mentioned black people because (especially the elderly) are more outspoken religiously, the jehovah's witness who come to my door, always black. The preachers in most deprived communites, always black, and many black people always thank god first and foremost whenever they achieve something good, or become successful, whereas white ppl in the same position don't seem so enthusiastic about thanking the lord, they may thank their parents, people who helped them get there or somebody first, but black ppl always give thanks to god first.

 

If you read any thank you notes on rappers albums covers, the first person they thank is god, and then the rest, but always god first. Not just rappers but those are my example, you can find this same from black basketballers, authors and many other lines of occupation.

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Many atheists don't seem sympathetic to poor.

 

Why so many atheists come from high-class background and schooling; and hardly any are from poor or inner-city environments???

 

I noticed that all the atheist public speakers that debate with religious figures all seem to be from good income background. I am speaking of the likes of Christopher Hitchens, Richard Dawkins and Daniel Dennet...

 

Also, did you guys notice that those people living in deprived areas are always religious, hardly any atheist in the poorest areas of UK and US cities....

Hmm... Lets see... Why so many people who don't believe in fairy tails come from environment of high education?

 

Nope, got me. No idea.

 

And why do people who spent many years studying, being payed nothing, or worse, paying for the privilege, while putting in more work than most people working two jobs, after graduating and getting a well paying jobs are unsympathetic towards lower classes that decided not to bother with education?

 

Yes, you must have thought long and hard on these questions, because I have no idea.

Prior to filing a bug against any of my code, please consider this response to common concerns.

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It's true tho. You never see athiest soup kitchens. I'm an athiest. I care about the poor, but not enough to man a soup kitchen at night in the cold in a dangerous city. I think we should make society so we don't need soup kitchens/charity etc.

There are such things as secular soup kitchens, as in soup kitchens irrespective of religion. You should also understand that there's no need to form atheist soup kitchens. For most atheists such as myself, what matters is helping, not helping in the name of any organization. Lots of atheists who do volunteer work don't mind doing it with a church, because what they're doing is for the common good and not for the church.

 

I can't believe this thread is being taken seriously. Atheists don't seem sympathetic? Read this: link

 

Maybe, OP, you should actually do some of your own research before putting out your foolish preconceived notions.

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Im a atheist and im from a typical working class background in the north of England, never went to University or anything like that so to say that all atheist are from high class backgrounds is complete untrue, so whats your point really?

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Maybe because atheists aren't throwing their money away by giving it to "god". That mofo always seems to need mula.

I actually have somewhat of a problem with this. I am a Catholic myself and I hate that when I put money in the collection plate it goes to pro life lobbies and bullsh*t like that. I mean if a Church or Temple or Mosque whatever wants to inject itself into the political arena like that, should it not become taxable? At least as a Catholic though it goes to fight the death penalty, so it's really a cancelled out effect for me I guess.

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Just because there is not much religious activity does not meann they are atheist. Every poor/disadvantaged person white or black i have spoken to has said they believing in god, they might not attend a church or show much interest in debating or learning about the religions, but they still believe. I have known many ppl who have never even read the bible but still believe in god.

 

I can say truthfully that i have never met anybody from the "ghetto" who had that harsh, anti-god attitude that many atheist have.

 

I mentioned black people because (especially the elderly) are more outspoken religiously, the jehovah's witness who come to my door, always black. The preachers in most deprived communites, always black, and many black people always thank god first and foremost whenever they achieve something good, or become successful, whereas white ppl in the same position don't seem so enthusiastic about thanking the lord, they may thank their parents, people who helped them get there or somebody first, but black ppl always give thanks to god first.

 

If you read any thank you notes on rappers albums covers, the first person they thank is god, and then the rest, but always god first. Not just rappers but those are my example, you can find this same from black basketballers, authors and many other lines of occupation.

I know literally dozens of people from poor and disadvantaged backgrounds, and very few of them are religious. In fact, based on my personal experiences, I have to say that people from low income backgrounds are probably less religious than those from higher income backgrounds. To some extent, it does appear to be the case in the US (see this report here) but the UK is markedly different. Levels of religious belief across British society are much lower than they are in the US, for instance. But there are also interesting differences in the way they hold beliefs. For instance, individuals with lower educational standards and from low-income backgrounds are more likely to be swayed by more fundamentalist teaching- this is a proven statistic across both Christianity and Islam in the UK. It's been part of the reason behind the rise in modern Salaffi teaching in the UK.

 

Well, I have. In fact, my old flat-mate when I was doing my undergraduate degree- who came from a very low-income background and had spent almost his entire life on or under the poverty line by UK standards, and he was possibly the most staunchly anti-religious individual I've ever met. Again, your applying stereotypes to an objective argument and it doesn't follow logically.

 

Has it occurred to you that that has it's basis in cultural background, rather than any other factor? People from minority ethnic groups are more likely to be religious, that's a given fact. But these groups aren't representative of wider society as they are numerically in a minority. And I've never met a black Jehovah's Witness. There's an interesting parallel with education and religious belief. In the West- or, more specifically, in Europe, higher educational standards tally in with a reduction in the likelihood of holding religious belief. Lower educational standards tend to suggest lower economic background, and if lower educational standards involve a higher rate of religious belief, then you could argue that it's a product of the political and scientific enlightenment of the 17th and 18th century, on which most modern teaching is based? That idea tallies well with minority groups descended from areas not exposed to this period in Western history; basically, their lack of historic family exposure to the revolutions in Western (largely European) thinking mean they're more likely to hold religious beliefs, especially if they've not spend long in the higher tiers of the educational system where such ideas are discussed in depth.

 

I think you've lost sight of your argument. Weren't you arguing that atheism lacked empathy? Now your arguing about whether rappers thank God in their album notes, which I never denied. I claimed that by doing so they often went counter to your idea that they lacked empathy, as many of them are either currently related or have been related in the near past to organised crime, which suggests a lack of moral integrity rather than it being intrinsic to people who have religious belief. Basically, you've contradicted your own logic.

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And religious people who help people in the name of religion, do they do it because they want to help or do they do it because they expect their god to reward them? I suspect the latter.

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And religious people who help people in the name of religion, do they do it because they want to help or do they do it because they expect their god to reward them? I suspect the latter.

Not here.

 

As I've said in job threads on this forum I work in a youth group financed by the church above it, and we don't help the community because we think that we will get "priority" over everyone else, hell no, we do it so we can make a change in the area. An area that Bristol City Council does not care about, an area where people seclude themselves from eachother, an area where previous community centres have been closed due to funding being slashed by the council.

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In the uk and england I always assumed it was the middle/upper class conservative traditionalist types that were religious . Most working-class people I know don't believe in god and are very hard working people that don't have time to blame god for what they do or don't have.

And OP I'm guessing is from America, so that kind of destroys your argument as that is the land of god and gods chosen people blah blah whatever . Why would a poor, disadvantaged person feel the need to pray to god? to get a better life. In some communities churches are like the most important places. Especially in southern states of america . You look at the people who ar religious , they were taught to by they're parents . Its in the community because they are simple people who don't want to think for themselves . They want someone else to have the control , the way I see it god can be a comfort to some people . They might not be religious or read the bible but its part of they're community .

 

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lol What? The overwhelming majority of (American) Atheists come from the middle class. If you look at it world wide, then Atheism is most prominent in the low-class and highly impoverished populations (i.e. East Asia, most of central and southern Africa, eastern Europe, etc.).

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The reason why you're not seeing Hitchens, Dawkins and other atheist speakers is because poverty isn't the issue they're speaking on. Here's a picture that speaks for itself:

user posted image

 

The word 'atheist' does nothing to describe the morality of the person whom the label is applied to. All it says is that that person does not believe in a god. That is it. It doesn't describe anything else. It doesn't say if the person is good or bad, although there seems to be a large group of the religious who are keen to paint the group with a very negative brush. Which is ironic, because historically religions are the most savage ideological entities that man has ever known.

 

Why don't you bring up the 'no atheists in foxholes'?

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lol What? The overwhelming majority of (American) Atheists come from the middle class. If you look at it world wide, then Atheism is most prominent in the low-class and highly impoverished populations (i.e. East Asia, most of central and southern Africa, eastern Europe, etc.).

You're kidding, aren't you?

 

Seriously?

 

Atheism prominent in East Asia, central and southern Africa, eastern Europe?

 

Really? Done any actual research? No, don't answer that. I already know the answer. You didn't. If you did, you certainly wouldn't have included Africa, where about 45% of the total population are Muslim, 40% are Christian (whether Catholic or other), and the remaining 5% are mostly Baha'i, Hindu or traditional religions, with atheists being a very, very small portion of that last 5%.

 

I'd hardly call the nations of Eastern Asia largely atheist either. While Taoism, Confucianism and Shinto tend to not have single grand deities, they certainly engage in worship of spirits, and they're definitely considered religions.

 

Eastern Europe is an interesting case, because while Estonia polls belief in a god at about 16%, about 50% of the population there considers there to be spirits or "some other force", and 26% define themselves as being atheist. Most of Eastern Europe has similar stats with the notable exception of Poland, where the atheists are 1% of the population. If we look at the rest of Europe, the nation where atheism is most common is France, where 33% consider themselves to lack a belief in god. But that still leaves 34% who do, and 27% who believe in some other force. Even in Britain, atheists are only about 20% of the population, with the rest pretty evenly spread between god and "something else".

 

Source

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Uh... i'm an athiest. I don't live in a city, only a lil' village, i spend most of my day on the computer, cuz i'm home schooled... so, what you said in the first post are lies tounge.gif

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Uh... i'm an athiest. I don't live in a city, only a lil' village, i spend most of my day on the computer, cuz i'm home schooled... so, what you said in the first post are lies tounge.gif

Please go to a regular school.

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My family don't have the money. We only have £50 tops confused.gif

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My family don't have the money. We only have £50 tops confused.gif

Schooling is free in the UK. dontgetit.gif

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It always makes me laugh that a reasonable and sensible conclusion to a crisis is to 'pray' for those affected.

 

 

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And why do people who spent many years studying, being payed nothing, or worse, paying for the privilege, while putting in more work than most people working two jobs, after graduating and getting a well paying jobs are unsympathetic towards lower classes that decided not to bother with education?

No.

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Finn 7 five 11

 

It's true tho. You never see athiest soup kitchens. I'm an athiest. I care about the poor, but not enough to man a soup kitchen at night in the cold in a dangerous city. I think we should make society so we don't need soup kitchens/charity etc.

Thats because atheist's are not groups, they are individuals, (i have never seen an atheist group) I have seen atheists do charitybefore, not in a group though, they usually join another organization

Like Robinski said

All public speakers are from middle - upper class
i think the ratio's of poor to rich atheist's would be very similar to the poor to rich ratio in Christianity.

 

In fact from what i have seen the kids that learn to worship a religion are usually the ones whos parents have loads of money and are willing to spend anywhere between $1000 and $30000 a year just to send their kids to a religious school. (In australia religious schools are private schools and you must pay to be schooled there.

Edited by finn4life
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I'm atheist. When I do some hard work and I'm wrecked after it but I get paid, I don't thank God, I thank, myself because I did that work. It was my will-power, not God's.

 

When I see people not bothering their arses and I'm not judging from afar, this is people I went to school with, not bothering, sponging off the welfare (when they're well eligible to work) I don't sympathise with them nor do I think, God have mercy on them.

 

I also have a heart. When a genuine beggar asks me for change, I'll give it. I gave one of my favourite hats to a homeless guy last week because it was cold out.

 

I wonder if you are basing your realisation off the first part of my post?

 

So, I'd like to ask the OP, who do you define as poor, firstly and how did you come to your realisation.

 

I dont agree with the above photo either. I hate those pic, like the Steve Jobs - A million cries.. .pic.

 

You can replace the Pope with any person from this forum, sitting at their computer, enjoying wasting time on the internet, a lot of us are probably a little overweight and has access to a lot of food, clothes and water all around us.

Edited by ThePinkFloydSound
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