Atheism is a faith like anyone else

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Tin-Man's picture
@Anybody Re: Fergie

@Anybody Re: Fergie

...*tip-toeing slowly down hallway*... *quietly easing break room door partially open*... *peeking head around egde of door*... *whispering*... Psssst.... Hey.... Is he gone yet?...

ferguson1951's picture
You reject me "a priori".

You reject me "a priori".

I came to this forum in order to try and understand atheists. I am totally disappointed.

Old man shouts at clouds's picture


More lies. You didn't come here to "understand atheists" you came to build your ego and see if your lies would fly. They didn't,. You have preached, treated the truth with disdain and posted unconnected garbage for 10 pages.

You have done more for atheism than any arguments we could present. Thanks for that.

Now, please continue with ypur lies, exaggerations and fantasies. Me and Captain Cat thoroughly enjoy our laughter in the morning.

See You Next Thursday.

David Killens's picture


"I came to this forum in order to try and understand atheists. I am totally disappointed."

NO, you did not you lying asshole. You can to insult and pick a fight.

In case you attempt to change your first post, here it is in it's entirely.

"Hello friends,

I am 68, single, from Italy, "radical" Christian.
You ask for proof that God exists?
When the Pharisees asked Jesus to give a sign that He was the Son of God He refused. The sign was Him.
Prayers are not answered?
I doubt prayers from an atheist can be answered: you have to live the New Testament and become a disciple of Jesus and you will know different.
Atheism is just a faith like faith in the parallel universe.
The non-existence of God cannot be proved, and that's all there is to it."

Think about this fergie ..... would jesus act this way? What does jesus think about you being such a jerk and claiming you represented jesus?

Sheldon's picture
ferguson 1951 "I came to this

ferguson 1951 "I came to this forum in order to try and understand atheists. I am totally disappointed."

Yes I can see why, your inability to understand anything must be very frustrating for you. Try a dictionary definition of atheism as a starting point, this might be simple enough for you to grasp where you are going fundamentally astray.

Tin-Man's picture
...*strolls into room

...*strolls into room whistling a happy tune*... Hey, everybody! Another beautiful da-... *spots Fergie by the snack table stuffing his pockets with cookies and chips*.... *stops dead-still*... *shoulders slump*... Aw, fuc-... Er, uh, I mean... Oh, Fergie!... *forced smile*... THERE you are! Yeah, uh, we were all... uh, you know... like, getting worried you might have, uh... you know, abandoned us!... Sooo, like, uhhh... Wow! Yeah... Thank God you are still here.... *awkward silence follows*.... *Fergie continues stuffing pockets with snacks*...

IanS1's picture
What do you mean when you say


" I came to this forum in order to try and understand atheists. I am totally disappointed.”

What do you mean when you say you want to understand atheists? There are millions of people in the world who can be described as atheists, and they all believe all sorts of different things. The only belief that they necessarily share is that they do not believe that any supernatural gods such as the Christian God (Yahweh) actually exist. Do you expect to understand everything about all the different beliefs of those many million of people? Or do you actually mean that you wanted to understand why atheists do not believe the Christian God exists?

You often mentioned science in this thread. If you really knew anything about science, and really cared about how and why science arrives at the most reliable explanations that any of us have for things in the world around us, then you would know that almost everything ever investigated by science (that's literally billions of different things) has turned out to have a perfectly natural explanation and not any supernatural explanation as insisted upon from religious faith.

In biblical times, i.e. 2000 to 3000 years ago (i.e. OT to NT) people really believed that God was the supernatural answer to all of those questions. They believed that because they were at that time extremely ignorant of the sort of science we have today. They simply did not know any better in 500BC or 500AD. A supernatural God seemed to them the most obvious answer.

But know we know better than that. Now we know what the stars in the sky are, now we know why the sun “shines”, now we know what thunder & lightening are, what causes earthquakes, what disease is etc. We actually also know (since Darwin in 1859) how all humans came to exist on this Earth. And none of that has anything to do with any God.

Those are the sort of scientific reasons why, in the 21st century, hundreds of millions of people (atheists) no longer believe that God exists. I.e. because we have learned from science that none of the claims made for any gods have turned out to be true … in fact they have all turned out to be false! IOW – it's not just that science fails to find any evidence of God, but rather that science finds a vast mountain of evidence against the claimed God.

Why should we believe science rather than unscientific religious faith? The answer is because the discoveries and explanations from science have been shown far beyond any credible doubt to be correct as far as anyone can honestly judge. Whereas the religious explanations have been shown to completely untrue and no more than ancient ignorant superstitions as far as any educated person can honestly judge. That's why.

Tin-Man's picture


....*standing on chair clapping and cheering*... Bravo! Bravo! Welcome to the AR, good sir. Absolutely great having you with us. If any of your following posts are even half a good as the one I just read, then I certainly look forward to hearing more from you. We always enjoy having another voice of reason join our ranks. Hope to see you around more... *thumbs up*...

Calilasseia's picture
You reject me "a priori".

You reject me "a priori".

No, we rejected your unsupported assertions and demonstrable lies, on robust grounds. Namely, that they were unsupported assertions and demonstrable lies. Such as the lie you peddled about purportedly having studied the relevant cosmological physics underpinning the Big Bang, only to describe this event as an "explosion", which is a tell-tale sign we're dealing with a pedlar of duplicitous amateur apologetics.

I came to this forum in order to try and understand atheists. I am totally disappointed.

No you didn't, you came here to preen your ego, and pretend that your attachment to fatuous mythology was going to sway everyone here with your self-declared brilliance, only to have the vacuity and duplicity inherent in your output ruthlessly dissected. Such as the occasion here earlier in the thread, when I pointed out several applicable concepts, such as

[1] The difference between proof and evidential support (how often have I seen supernaturalists and mythology fanboys fail to understand this distinction?);

[2] Your failure to understand how propositional logic actually operates (another frequently observed aspect of the supernaturalist aetiology);

[3] Your failure to understand the distinction between blind assertions and evidentially supported postulates (another tick in the supernaturalist aetiology box), and;

[4] Your failure to understand what atheism actually is (again, if I had been paid £5 for every time I've schooled a supernaturalist on this, I could retire on the proceeds).

Indeed, your relentlessly tiresome anti-intellectual rants, devoid of substance and frequently littered with blatant ad hominems, far from making your mythology and its crass assertions attractive to those of us who paid attention in class, have only served to make said mythology seem even more verminous and pestilential than it did before. Indeed, in a subsequent post, I mentioned one of those assertions in passing, namely that the authors of your mythology thought one could instantiate wholesale phenotypic change, simply by arranging for the parent organisms to copulate alongside coloured sticks. Even an 11 year old first time student of basic biology knows this to be fatuous and absurd. Then, I gave a detailed exposition of why miracles are nothing more than figments of the imagination, by dissecting a particularly ludicrous historical example, to which you had no answer. Later, when I dissected your resurrection of the repeatedly destroyed and duplicitous, well-poisoning "Stalin, Hitler and Mao were atheists" trope that mythology fanboys masturbate over so much, your sole response was yet another snide, condescending one-liner devoid of content.

Furthermore, later on, I presented a link in another post, to an example of the sort of problems inherent in the "god concept", courtesy of an exposition of what might happen in the future if cosmological physics moves along a particular trajectory. You manifestly never even bothered to read that exposition, presumably because it was too difficult for you to understand, though many others here have both read and understood said exposition. As for your pathetic attempt to peddle the duplicitous "you think life arose by chance" garbage we've seen so often from your ilk, which I dissected and destroyed in full here, this once again demonstrates that you were only here to peddle your ignorant prejudices. Your risible response was similarly subject to the relevant ordnance.

Others here have been similarly diligent in dismantling your canards, your blatant misrepresentations and your outright manifest lies, and your response to the exposure of said canards, misrepresentations and lies, has been entirely typically supernaturalist - evade, deny and fabricate all over again. Your conduct of discourse here would be a source of shame and embarrassment to an actual convicted criminal, let alone anyone who exerts effort to stay in accord with ethical principles, and as a corollary, the end of your tenure here, which now looks increasingly inevitable as a result of your well-documented egregious mendacity, will probably be greeted by many with a sigh of relief louder than the Krakatoa detonation in 1883.

The only reason we have tolerated your affected rabid wolverine act, is for pedagogical purposes. Frequently, we find that giving supernaturalists enough rope to hang themselves with is all too sadly effective. In your case, the resulting spectacle has been florid and gangrenous in the extreme. If at some point in the future, a competition is launched here to find the most starkly pathological example of supernaturalist failure, the assorted vomitings you have presented here will almost certainly be regarded as a serious gold medal contender. To re-work an introduction from a famous UK comedy series, you are an habitual discoursive criminal who regards wilful abuse of whatever arena you visit as an occupational hazard, and presumably regards sanction and opprobrium earned for this in the same casual manner.

ferguson1951's picture
Three hours from now I shall

Three hours from now I shall post my last message

David Killens's picture


"Three hours from now I shall post my last message"

Thank you for the warning, I shall not visit this thread or read any more drivel from you. I am sure you hope some of us will read and ponder your last message. I won't.

ferguson1951's picture
I got news for you.

I got news for you.

No, it is not that the Hubble telescope discovered a new black hole.

No, it is not that they finally found a missing link. That is old news. Initially science said that species developed in linear fashion one after another. Everybody started looking for the missing links but, it goes without saying, nobody found half of one. Yet another scientific failure. So science changed the story and said that species developed in “bush” pattern from one same trunk.
This is how science works: by trial an error until they find the one error nobody can say anything about.

No, the news is this:

Some time ago I was enjoying myself with the Italian atheists on their forum.

To cut a long story short, here is what one of the atheist moderators eventually said about me:

( translated into English via Google Translator)

“Now, wonder! Here you are, you are the living example of the "true believer" as I understand it, and you have amply demonstrated it with your stories and your arguments. The next time I have to talk to some forum users, citing my thesis developed at the time, I will have the example that confirms the validity of the claim: I'll just have to address this thread, where your "legacy" will remain forever carved. Thanks, thanks for everything!”

By the way. In 1979 I spent a short holiday in the US. With an English friend of mine who still writes to me from time to time. I told him: “We go anywhere you want but not to New York”. We landed in LA and went coast-to-coast on the Greyhound through the South. I did not like it all that much. Many deserts that meant nothing to me. San Francisco and the Grand Canyon were the only things to write home about. I did like Frisco very much: Golden Gate, Japanese Garden, Chinatown, Lombard St., Fiserman’s Wharf, the tramways, the view from the hills. Lovely.
The people were very nice but, of course, people are nice everywhere when you are in their land for just a short visit.
The only problem is that due to the temperature difference between outside and the air-conditioned places, I got severe bronchitis and later had to spend one month in bed with fever back in Italy.

I do not think I would like living in America today. I would not feel safe in a country where everybody has a gun at home. Plus, the police are . . hummm. . . and the justice system appears sometimes very funny to us here. Religion is widespread, but does not change the fact that, apparently, the US is the land of work, money and fun. Politics seems to be very far from the actual needs of the people. There is no welfare and you have to pay for everything through your nose. I don’t like it.

Religion is much more important than science. True religion has ethics, science has not (anything goes).
If one talks religion, abortion is the biggest crime in history. Fifty million human beings are killed through abortion every year in the world. If one talks science, abortion is a social achievement.

In any case, since Quantum Physics, science does not require something to be verifiable anymore , so I don’t see why rational scientific atheists should demand that God be verifiable.

My friends: you keep dreaming. I do not expect much from a world that reads Harry Potter.
If we are unlucky enough, maybe one day Potter will surpass the Bible as the #1 world best-seller.

As the Boss used to say: “You want it, you take it, you pay the price.”

My last will is this: forget about flying taxis and high-speed trains. Make something good out of yourselves, do your inner work and become someone who, by his actions, makes this world a better place to live in.

True Christian religion has an answer for every question. Look there and you will not need to look anywhere else. Above all, true Christian religion will teach you to give meaning to your life. Science cannot. Logic cannot. Reason cannot. Philosophers use reason, but they all have divergent opinions.

Good bye and God bless.

One day you’ll thank me. hahaha

Tin-Man's picture
@Everybody Re: Fergie -

@Everybody Re: Fergie - "Good bye and God bless."

...*throwing hands up in exasperation*... Oh, ain't that just GREAT!!! ... You bunch of degenerate assholes! Lookie at whatchya done did! You all done gone and made Fergie R-U-N-N O-F-T! NOW how am I suppose to live a happy and fulfilling life vicariously through him??? I can already feel my poor pathetic atheist lifestyle spiraling out of control into a deep dark abyss.... *desperately pleading*... Is there anybody here who wouldn't mind my riding their coattails so that I might have at least some small chance at happiness?... *look of realization*... Oh, nevermind! What was I thinking? We are ALL a pitiful bunch of godless heathens here, with no chance of ever having a good life.... *anguished cry*... WE'RE DOOOOOOOMED!...

dogalmighty's picture
Reason is a distinct human

Reason is a distinct human trait that weighs the preponderance of corroborating or contradictory evidence, in the constant search for truth. A particularly refined human ability that has aided in our successful progression throughout time. Faith is not a pathway to is faith rational for use in discovering truth? Its not. Seeing everything biblical is not based on objective evidence, and based solely on is a god even possible? its not.

Adrian's picture
Okay I mean if you want to

Okay I mean if you want to hypothesise that some kind of supernatural being of ultimate limitless power created the universe then I think that's fine, the universe is immensely complex you can argue that if anything was slightly off you wouldn't have life at all. I don't think it's necessary to have a creator being but you could have such thing no problem it's not beyond the scope of reason.

Here's the the main issue I have with it though, would such a being if it exists actually be worthy of our worship? The universe if you haven't noticed isn't a particularly nice place at all, it actually rather nasty for a lot of sentient beings particularly for humans. You do have a lot of nice features like sunsets and rainbows, pretty flowers and fluffy cuddly things but you have AIDS, bone cancer, the parasitic worm that blinds the eyes of African children, that little fish that swims into your penis and all kinds of goings on besides. And we have to put up with this stuff until we die and then everything gets made right, providing you just believe something without any significant evidence of any kind at all. If you have Jesus coming to save us he's the being that created the universe and all that it entails that we needed to saved from to begin with! It's like the Captain of your ship kicks you into the ocean and then throws you a life ring. You're not going to have undying and undying gratitude in a loving relationship with him you will think 'What the hell did you just do? What are you playing at? Are you mad?'

Even if you want to blame it on say Satan the thing is God would have created Satan in the full knowledge of what he was going to do us. If you want to say it's it's something to do with freewill does that imply we have all that removed once we die and get to the perfectly nice eternal life? Would we get bored of the perfectly nice eternal life without anything much to do with no freewill after a billion trillion years? These are the questions I have to ask. The issue isn't really whether there is a God in the traditional monotheistic sense or not you can really dig a little more deeply into the question and what it would entail in practice.

Grinseed's picture
Block quotedTo cut a long

To cut a long story short, here is what one of the atheist moderators eventually said about me:
( translated into English via Google Translator)
“Now, wonder! Here you are, you are the living example of the "true believer" as I understand it, and you have amply demonstrated it with your stories and your arguments. The next time I have to talk to some forum users, citing my thesis developed at the time, I will have the example that confirms the validity of the claim: I'll just have to address this thread, where your "legacy" will remain forever carved. Thanks, thanks for everything!"

The irony burns like phosphorous.

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
And Fergie departs an

And Fergie departs unlamented, an unsung hero.
Lying for Jesus in the teeth of a crowd that deal in facts and evidence.

What a great man with a penetrating intellect and genuine humility (translation from the gaelic) An insufferably arrogant prick who elevated ignorance and wilful stupidity to levels never before seen on this forum

A walking advertisement for atheism, Fergie's good opinion pf himself is never disturbed by the reality of his situation or demeanour.

Farewell Fergie , the likes of you will not be seen again...(I fucking hope)

Vale Fergi, Requiescet in stercore.

algebe's picture
@Ferguson1951: I do not

@Ferguson1951: I do not expect much from a world that reads Harry Potter. If we are unlucky enough, maybe one day Potter will surpass the Bible as the #1 world best-seller.

It doesn't matter whether you read the Bible or Harry Potter. What matters is whether you're stupid enough to forget that they're both fiction.

ferguson1951's picture
You call me stupid simply

You call me stupid simply because I do not share your views.

To me, and to anyone, this is hard evidence that YOU are the arrogant and stupid.

You are not the judges, my friends. You are no one. You are just minute microscopic beings in this expanding universe. Your views count no more than the views of a cat. Go on BELIEVING that you are masters, but there is no evidence. Your views get lost in the ocean of world views that have littered history. Your views are just your views and nobody else's. Come down from your pedestal and AT LEAST learn to get involved in a civilized exchange of views. Maybe they do not teach that in university and you are just zombies who have licked your lecturer's feet for so long you just cannot see beyond anything that is not in your books.

As someone said: People like you are the reason we have middle fingers.

Tin-Man's picture
Re: Fergie - "You call me

Re: Fergie - "You call me stupid simply because I do not share your views. To me, and to anyone, this is hard evidence that YOU are the arrogant and stupid."

Aw, fuck! My irony meter just exploded!

algebe's picture
@ferguson1951: AT LEAST learn

@ferguson1951: AT LEAST learn to get involved in a civilized exchange of views.


Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ Fergie

@ Fergie

Classic! You even lied about leaving, then you lied about your "Last post" ...I tell you what, if there is such a thing as reincarnation you will be back as a corkscrew....

Then you use your last, last post to vilify your audience...ungrateful wretch.

Will there be more from the digitally challenged Fergie? Don't leave your seats folks, I am sure he is reading the comments and leaking steam at all his gaskets.

To me, and to anyone, this is hard evidence that YOU are the arrogant and stupid.

This has got to be the best comment so far......from the OP to this post the breathtaking arrogance, faux humility and oozing haughty pride in non achievement has evidenced itself from our favourite fraudulent Fergie.

Even Captain Cat has lapsed into giggling at this pompous liar and his posts....

Will there be a last. last, last ultimate post from Fergie?

Sheldon's picture
ferguson 1951 "You call me

ferguson 1951 "You call me stupid simply because I do not share your views. To me, and to anyone, this is hard evidence that YOU are the arrogant and stupid."

He didn't call you stupid, your grasp of English is appalling. However it is worthy of note that you completely ignored his point, to make a fallacious ad hominem attack.

ferguson 1951 "You are not the judges, my friends. You are no one. You are just minute microscopic beings in this expanding universe. Your views count no more than the views of a cat. Go on BELIEVING that you are masters, but there is no evidence."

Then the same must axiomatically apply to your puerile superstitious views, and it is theists and only theists on here who make this claim, not one atheist has ever claimed they or humans are masters of anything. Not one theist can offer a single shred of objective evidence for any deity. and they deny the existence of most of them anyway.

The rest of your hilarious vapid rhetoric in that disjointed rant is too idiotic and banal to be worthy of comment. Do ever address the point. I didn't put a question mark, as that question is rhetorical.

How fitting you end with yet another ad hominem fallacy, I think your trolling is heading for the exit if you continue in this vein.

Adrian's picture
I don't really see why we

I don't really see why we need a being to exist that is infinitely greater than ourselves that we have to worship in order for us to have any significance at all, we're hugely significant to ourselves that's what matters to us personally, as a society and as a species. Not that we are at all objectively significant if you look at the size and the scale of the universe as a whole. Back in the day people believed the Earth to right in the centre of the universe and everything orbited around it in glassy spheres. We don't really have the option to go back in time when perhaps human and Earth centric religions such as Christianity would have made a lot more actual sense. Reality isn't going to accommodate itself into a form that is pleasing to us we have to accommodate ourselves to reality, to the pursuit of understanding it as well as we can. Science not supernatural based books, traditions and beliefs is the best way to accomplish this. Philosophy is important to as science doesn't cover morality and how best to live and all that kind of thing.

AreYouOffendedXD's picture
Atheism is as much of a faith

Atheism is as much of a faith as not collecting stamps is a hobby...this argument from equivocation is not only sad but its pretty much saying you admit to having no real reason to believe what you do and trying to throw us in that ridiculousness also... Lol pathetic

Calilasseia's picture
Now that our latest specimen

Now that our latest specimen has left the building, having failed even the most elementary of tests, I suppose it's time to address a few last canards ...

Religion is much more important than science.

Tell that to the millions of people who are alive due to science based medicine, that would be dead otherwise.

Oh wait, let's see what happens when people prefer asking an invisible magic man to wave his magic todger and make diseases go away, shall we?

Dead Children Resulting From Supernaturalist Fuckwittery

[1] Torrance Cantrell. 8 year old autistic child, whose parents preferred mediaeval superstition to modern medicine, and so took him to church for an "exorcism", in which he was sat on so that he could be held down whilst so-called "evil spirits" were "driven" out of him , and crushed to death. With the sort of slimy unctuosity we see all the time from supernaturalists, the pastor claimed that his church had "done nothing wrong", as though the snuffing out of an 8 year old's life was of no consequence.

[2] Kara Neumann. 11 year old girl, who died of diabetic keotacidosis, because her parents preferred trying to persuade a magic man to cure her, over and above taking her to a doctor. Note: diabetes has been treatable for decades, and is a singularly well-understood disease in the medical lexicon. Talking to a magic man in the hope of a cure, on the other hand, worked about as well in Kara Neumann's case, as it did in the case of the 25 million Europeans who died from the Black Death. Video of the case here.

[3] Lydia Schatz, a 7 year old girl who died after receiving a severe beating, motivated by her parents reading the works of Mike and Debi Pearl, who advocate brutal corporal punishment as a means of controlling children. Lydia Schatz was beaten for seven hours with a metal rod, with occasional breaks for 'prayer'. The coroner in the case reported that Lydia's injuries after the beating were so severe, that she died of a condition more usually associated with earthquakes and bomb attacks. Her sister Zariah reported to police that her own beating, which she survived, including beatings on the soles of her feet, a method of torture known as bastinado to those familiar with such abuses. Kevin Schatz is now serving a minimum 22 years for murder and torture, and Elizabeth Schatz a minimum 12 years. More on this in this video.

[4] Austin Sprout, a 16 year old boy who died from "flu like symptoms" (which could cover a wide range of illnesses, including bacterial meningitis, most of which are easily treatable in any modern healthcare system). The parents, Brandi & Russel Bellew, apparently thought that talking to an imaginary magic man was better than calling a doctor. As a consequence of their preference for mediaeval superstition over evidence based medicine, they are facing manslaughter charges. More here/a>.

The parents are apparently affiliated with an organisation called "General Assembly and Church of the First Born", which has a long history of controversial deaths associated with its preference for "faith healing" over real medicine. From this website, we learn that Austin Sprout isn't the only child to have died as a result of this group's preference for mediaeval superstition. For example:

[5] Zachery Swezey, a 17 year old youth, who died from a ruptured appendix. Parents Greg and JaLea Swezey, wasted three days trying "faith healing" instead of calling a doctor. From this news page, we learn that the parents were charged with second-degree murder after his death.

[6] Sarah Leeman, borm prematurely, weighing less than 3 pounds, died a week after her birth from bacterial menigitis and accompanying septicaemia. Parents Louis and Patricia Leeman, once again, never called for medical assistance.

[7] Rhianna Rose Schmidt, died within an hour of birth from a septicaemic infection, one that doctors have cited as being easily treatable if caught promptly. Parents Maltea and Dewayne Schmidt were convicted of reckless homicide for failing to seek medical attention for the child.

Courtesy of another "faith healing" church that prefers superstition to working medicine, the so-called "Followers of Christ", we have:

[8] Ava Worthington, aged 15 months, who died from pneumonia in 2008. Parents Raylene and Carl Worthington were charged with manslaughter, but thanks to a sympathetic jury, were able to escape with sentencing for the lesser charge of criminal mistreatment.

[9] The newborn child of Dale R. Hickman and Shannon M. Hickman, born prematurely at home, with no attempt made to call for medical assistance. The child, 6 weeks premature, weighed 3lbs 5oz, and died nine hours after birth from staphylococcal pneumonia attacking the child's underdeveloped lungs.

[10] Neil Beagley, 16, who died in June 2008 from complications arising from a congenital urinary blockage. Once again, no attempt was made to call for medical assistance. The parents, Jeffrey and Marci Beagley, were found guilty of criminally negligent homicide. During the case, we learn from here the following:

Prosecutors focused on the Beagleys' lifelong rejection of medical care and on a family dynamic that placed immense pressure on Neil Beagley to conform to his church's reliance on faith healing. They noted that Neil had limited contact with people outside his church who might have noticed health problems. He was home-schooled, and his social life did not extend beyond other church members.

[11] Syble Marie Ann Rossiter, aged 12 years, who died on February 5th, 2014, from complications (speccifically, diabetic ketoacidosis) arising from untreated Type 1 diabetes, a condition that is eminently treatable (see the Kara Neumann case earlier in this exposition). Parents Travis and Wenona Rossiter, members of the Church of the First Born, which rejects modern medicine, chose to pray for their daughter to become well again, instead of seking medical care, with entirely predictable results. More on this case, including the parents' indictment for manslaughter, can be read here. On November 11th, 2014, both parents were found guilty of manslaughter, as documented here, and sentenced to 10 years in prison each. Other cases attributable to this "church"and its "teachings", featuring children who died because the parents withheld medical attention, preferring asking their magic man to intervene, are:

[12] Jason Lockahrt, aged 9, died of a ruptured appendix in Dcember 1982.

[13] Angela Sweet, aged 7, also died of a ruptured appendix, this time in June 1990.

[14] Desiree Camren, aged 3, died of a treatable illness (not specified in this report. The child's father, at his trial, revealed that he knew the child was dying, but allowed the child to die because he thought it was the wrath of his magic man being brought upon him for not attending church.

[15] Loyd & Christina Hayes were charged with criminally negligent homicide, over the death of their son from treatable leukaemia in Novembner 1994.

[16] Joshua & Mindy Glore were charged over the death of their infant son from pneumona and bacterial meningitis (both treatable) on 28th February 1999.

[17] Amanda Bates, aged 13, died from diabetic ketoacidosis as a result of her parents withholding medical treatment in February 2001. The coroner ruled the child's death a homicide.

[18] Alexandru Radita, died of bacterial sepsis due to complications from starvation and neglect, was also diabetic. At the age of 15, he was estimated to weigh just 20 pounds. From the Calgary Herald news page covering this (link):

After returning from church to find their son not breathing, the parents of Calgary teenager Alexandru Radita prayed for two hours before calling emergency services, court heard Wednesday.

Shauna Mitchell, an investigator with the Medical Examiner’s office, said she was dispatched to the Citadel Drive N.W. home of Emil and Rodica Radita to look into a sudden death.

She said she asked the couple when they had last seen their son alive.

“They said they went to church at, I think it was after 1800 hours, and they came home at about 2000 hours and that’s when the father said that he wasn’t breathing, so they prayed and they didn’t call EMS until sometime around 2200 hours,” Mitchell said.

She told Crown prosecutor Marta Juzwiak there were multiple members of the couple’s church in the home.

“They were in the home praying together,” Mitchell said.

And she said it was possible the boy wasn’t breathing even before the couple went to church, as she was given conflicting reports from them.

She said the mother said Alexandru was breathing at 6 p.m. that day, but his father said he wasn’t.

Emil, 59, and Rodica, 53, are each charged with first-degree murder in the May 7, 2013, death of their 15-year-old son.

The boy, a diabetic, died from bacterial sepsis due to complications from starvation and neglect.

Both Mitchell and Const. Larry Pugliese, the first police officer on the scene, said the boy was nothing but skin and bones when they saw him dead in his bed.

Pugliese said Alexandru was “like a skeleton.”

He said it was clear to him the teen was dead.

“The boy was extremely thin,” Pugliese told the Court of Queen’s Bench murder trial.

“I thought at the time maybe (he weighed) 20 pounds,” Pugliese said.

Mitchell, too, said the teen was emaciated when she viewed his corpse.

“He basically looked like a skeleton with skin,” she said.

[19] Seth Johnson, adopted son of Timothy and Sarah Johnson, died because the adoptive parents preferred praying to an imaginary magic man over evidence based medicine. From the news story as reported here, we have this:

Two parents in Minnesota could face jail time after they allegedly tried to save their dying son with prayers instead of taking him to a hospital.

Authorities charged Timothy and Sarah Johnson last week with child neglect over the March 2015 death of their adopted son Seth. The 7-year-old came down with pancreatitis and acute sepsis, but the parents opted to treat him themselves because they had “issues going to doctors” and were concerned about the medications they would prescribe, according to news station KMSP.

Based off their own research, the couple instead diagnosed Seth with post-traumatic disorder, a brain injury and fetal alcohol syndrome.

“The parents admitted to police that his behavior had changed, that he wasn’t sleeping, was throwing himself down stairs and was taking hours to eat Yet, they refused to do what most parents would have done and take him to a doctor,” Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said in a statement.

From here, we learn the following:

The morning before the child’s death, the son called his parents to say his brother would not eat or interact and had stopped talking. The teen said he could not get his brother out of bed that morning and he was lethargic and limp.

When they returned home that evening, the parents found the seven-year-old laying on the floor. He did not react to their arrival.

Timothy and Sarah reportedly prayed for their son’s health, picked him up and brought him to the table for dinner. They fed him two bites of pizza by cutting it into bite-sized portions and putting it into his mouth. The parents then gave him a bath and laid him down to sleep with on a mattress in their room without a blanket or a pillow.

The Johnsons said they discussed seeking medical care for their son, but decided to wait until morning to determine whether it would be necessary.

From the same source, we have this statement, from Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman:

The charges against Timothy and Sarah Johnson in the death of their seven-year-old son were the result of an extensive and independent review by the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office.

Paramedics were called to the couple’s Plymouth house on Monday March 30, 2015 and young Seth was pronounced dead despite his father’s attempt at CPR.

Our office did not receive the case, or even hear about it, until almost nine months later in December 2015. When we read the case reports, we approached it as a homicide case. After all, he had bruising all over his body. He had two large lesions on the back of his heels. The parents admitted to police that his behavior had changed, that he wasn’t sleeping, was throwing himself down stairs and was taking hours to eat. Yet, they refused to do what most parents would have done and take him to a doctor.

Worse, the Johnsons went out of town to attend a wedding three days before Seth died. They left him in the care of his 16-year-old brother. The young man called his parents Sunday morning, telling them that Seth stopped talking on Saturday, that he could not get out of bed and had not been eating. The parents decided to leave the gathering right then, until the 16-year-old called back and said he was eating some Cheerios. They finally arrived home that night.

The Hennepin County Medical Examiner needed months to complete a thorough autopsy. They could determine that Seth died of acute pancreatitis and possible sepsis. But the medical examiner could not make the link between the cause of death and the actions of the parents.

We spent a year reviewing all the evidence. We consulted with a child-abuse pediatrician who reviewed all of the medical information and investigative files to advise us on this one simple question: Could he link the parents’ actions, or inactions, to Seth developing pancreatitis and dying? He could not.

As a result, we charged Timothy and Sarah Johnson with the most serious crime the law allows: neglect of a child resulting in substantial physical harm, which is a gross misdemeanor.

We cannot comprehend how a parent would leave a very sick seven-year-old to the care of a 16-year-old so they can go away for a weekend. Nor can we comprehend how the parents refused to come home Sunday morning to care for their sick child when they were notified of his serious condition. Nor can we comprehend why the parents did not call an ambulance Sunday night to immediately obtain medical help when they finally got home.

The Johnsons, of course, are presumed innocent. But we are going to use all of our resources to prove them guilty of neglect of a child resulting in substantial physical harm and ask for the strongest penalty allowed under the statute and sentencing guidelines.

[20] Ella Foster, aged 2, who died of preventable pneumonia because her parents, Jonathan & Grace Foster, were members of a fundamentalist church in Reading, Pennsylvania, that rejected evidence-based medicine, and preferred to hold conversations with an imaginary magic man instead. From the article on the case in the New Haven Register, we learn that the pastor of the church, the Rev. Rowland Foster (who was also Ella's grandfather) is being indicted on felony charges, connected with Pennsylvania state laws requiring clergy members, teachers and other "mandated reporters" to turn over details of suspected child abusers over to the authorities for investigation.

From the news article:

Foster, 72, pastor of a Faith Tabernacle Congregation church district in eastern Pennsylvania, was charged with a felony this month under a state law requiring clergy members, teachers and other “mandated reporters” to turn the names of suspected child abusers over to authorities for investigation. The law makes no exception for clergy who happen to be related to the abused child, as Foster was to Ella.

Most states have similar laws that require clergy to report abuse.

“He was well aware of the fact that this child was in need of medical treatment and he never reported it, nor do I believe that he ever had the intention to report it,” Berks County District Attorney John Adams, whose office is prosecuting Foster, said in an interview.

Cathleen Palm, of the Pennsylvania-based Center for Children’s Justice, said she hopes the prosecution, at a minimum, will spur action in the Legislature to protect children whose parents don’t seek necessary medical care based on religion.

“What the district attorney has done is clearly pivotal,” she said.

Neither the Rev. Foster nor his attorney returned calls for comment. Foster is due in court next month for a preliminary hearing that will likely attract a heavy presence of church members.

Ella’s parents, Jonathan and Grace Foster, were charged earlier with involuntary manslaughter and await trial. Police have said Jonathan Foster attributed Ella’s death to “God’s will.”

The same article reports that 25 children whose parents belong to the same sect have died in recent years in similar circumstances.

[21] Abigail Piland, died aged just 3 days, because her parents, Joshua and Rachel Piland, refused medical treatment in favour of prayer, after Abigail developed complications from jaundice. When the couple had a second child, Verity, the authorities moved swiftly to remove her to a hospital the moment she developed similar complications, as reported here ...

LANSING - Last year, when Joshua and Rachel Piland’s infant daughter died of complications from jaundice after the couple allegedly refused to seek medical treatment because of their religious beliefs, officials charged them with manslaughter.

Two weeks ago, when Rachel gave birth to another daughter with similar health problems, the couple again refused medical treatment. So, hours after Verity Piland's birth, state officials seized the newborn and took her to the hospital, where she received lifesaving blood transfusions.

The dramatic series of events, laid out in court records, began in February 2017 when police were called to the Pilands’ home several hours after 3-day-old Abigail Piland died.

The Pilands told investigators they ignored a midwife's advice to seek medical treatment for the infant because “God makes no mistakes,” and they believe in the power of prayer, the State Journal previously reported.

Rather than seek medical treatment for Abigail, who was born at their home near the Lansing Country Club, the Pilands tried to treat her jaundice by keeping her in a sunny room. After she died, the couple spent hours praying for the infant’s resurrection, the records show.

Later on, the article continues:

Court records do not say whether a midwife assisted with Verity Piland's July 17 birth, but someone filed a complaint that same day with Child Protective Services.

Officials acted swiftly, citing "anticipatory neglect" as they petitioned an Ingham County Circuit Court judge to remove Verity from her parents' care.

“There are current concerns for the safety and wellbeing of the newborn baby as the previous concerns which brought this family to the court’s attention have yet to be rectified,” a CPS investigator wrote.

A judge agreed, and within hours of her birth, Verity was taken to a local hospital.

Doctors immediately noticed the newborn was “significantly jaundiced” and said she may have Rh disease, which would require a “massive” blood transfusion to combat the problem, the court records show.

Rh disease, also known as Rh incompatibility, is a form of anemia which the National Institute of Health says can be dangerous, but is usually detected and treated with standard medical care during and after pregnancy.

[22] Mary Fusari, died aged 10 months from malnutrition and dehyration. More on this from here:

A pair of Christians have reacted with shock after they were charged with murder following the death of their baby daughter from malnutrition and dehydration.

Seth Welch and Tatiana Fusari, both 27, refused to get medical help for ‘religious reasons’ and a lack of trust in medical services.

They now face murder and first-degree child abuse following the death of Mary in Solon Township, north of Grand Rapids, Michigan.

A little later on, the article has this:

The court heard that when the first responders arrived they noticed the 10-month-old had sunken eyes and cheeks, and a lack of a pulse.

They declared her dead at the scene and an autopsy ruled that she had died as a result of neglect by her parents. The Kent County couple admitted their daughter had been skinny and underweight for at least a month, an affidavit alleged.

The parents didn’t seek medical help for religious reasons, fear of having Child Protective Services called and a lack of trust in medical services, according to records.

The parents are being held without bond and court records don’t list lawyers who can speak on their behalf.

Welch and Fusari have two older children together, aged two and four.

Child Protective Services filed on Monday a neglect case against the parents involving their two eldest children.

I'll bet the last thought of each of those dead children was "why are my parents too fuckwitted to call a doctor?"

But this will probably have no effect whatosever upon pretentious supernaturalists.

Moving on to some other canards ...

True religion has ethics, science has not (anything goes).

Ah, more pretentious bullshit from you in your parting shot.

What actually happens, as you would have known if you had ever paid attention in the relevant classes, is that scientists recognise that ethical questions arise from an entirely separate branch of human endeavour, and when ethical decisions are required, they turn to that branch of human endeavour in order to assist with those decisions. Indeed, every properly constructed academic research facility in the developed world has an ethics committee established therein, precisely in order to determine whether or not specific research programmes or procedures should continue. But I suspect, given your manifest bile and prejudice on such matters, that you'll ignore any data that doesn't conform to your bigotries, in a manner that violates the very ethics you claim to adhere to.

Moving on again ...

If one talks religion, abortion is the biggest crime in history. Fifty million human beings are killed through abortion every year in the world. If one talks science, abortion is a social achievement.

Oh wait, you are aware that your favourite mythology contains instructions on performing abortions, and considers the application thereof legitimate in certain instances?

That's before we factor into the equation, that fully 1 in 3 human conceptions results in a miscarriage, and as a corollary, if your imaginary magic man was real, your magic man would be the biggest abortionist of the lot. Taking from the available data (source: Our World In Data), that human population globally has risen from 7 billion in 2011, to 7.7 billion in 2019. then that constitutes an increase in population of 700 million over 8 years, an average of 87,500,000 new humans per year. Which, given that there are 31,536,000 seconds in a year, means that a successful new human conception takes place on this planet once every 0.36 seconds. But this accounts for only 2/3rds of all conceptions - so, 43,750,000 conceptions result in miscarriage.

From the same data source, we learn that out of 85 million unwanted pregnancies in 2012 (the last year for which reliable global data has been collated), 50% ended in abortions, which equals 42,500,000 abortions. As a corollary, your magic man, if it exists, is the biggest abortionist of the lot.

Oh, and since there exist circumstances in which abortions are a medical necessity to save the life of the mother (e.g., ectopic pregnancy), saving those women's lives IS a social achievement. Unless of course you're an adherent of a misogynist mythology that treats women as property, the way yours does.

In any case, since Quantum Physics, science does not require something to be verifiable anymore

Bare faced lie. What part of "experimental verification" did you not learn about in basic science classes?

so I don’t see why rational scientific atheists should demand that God be verifiable.

Try "because science expends effort validating its postulates", directly contradicting your bare faced lie above.

My friends: you keep dreaming. I do not expect much from a world that reads Harry Potter.
If we are unlucky enough, maybe one day Potter will surpass the Bible as the #1 world best-seller.

At least the Harry Potter novels constitute quality fiction ... unlike your sad mythology, which is absurd to the point of being beneath deserving of a point of view.

algebe's picture


Your catalogue of pain and death caused by religion tragically underscores the fact that religion, especially the various flavors of the Xtian cult, is an ongoing global holocaust of suffering and death and an incinerator for human potential and dignity.

The heart of this darkness is Catholicism. We tend to think of the modern Catholic church as a kinder, gentler version of its medieval self. After all, the Pope even apologized for the church's mistreatment of Galileo. Yet even now it continues to cause millions of deaths in Africa because of its rejection of condoms. To call that stupid would be to excuse it. It's pure evil inflicted by a cult that feeds on pain and death.

dogalmighty's picture
Cal, this snippet, is just

Cal, this snippet, is just the proverbial tip of the iceberg. My career in medicine presents weekly cases where children where emergently taken from religious environments where law revoked parental or guardian rights, on the welfare of the child. As you can imagine, the health of the children when received in my care, was outrageous, and obviously criminal. Most lived, some died. It was very hard to remain impartial when testifying in court. Children I have encountered thus far in my career due to religious abuse, amount to roughly over one thousand individuals...Now multiply that number by each hospital attending physician. Ya. The single most dishearteningly dismaying fact of my career.

LogicFTW's picture
@thread Cal, doG, Algebe:

@thread Cal, doG, Algebe:

When I joined these forums years ago I already knew any of the regular "god" ideas were extremely unlikely.

One of the many things I have learned here since joining is:
Religion is truly horrible, not just in the past, but current present day. Religion is not just a few crazies bending knee to invisible sky daddy to feel better about the unknown and what they fear. It is far more and far more destructive.

I am increasingly finding with information like this, presented from study, news, and people on the "ground" like doG experiencing it first hand, that my old attitude of "let people believe what they want to believe, they are not hurting anyone but maybe themselves" is not accurate. Religion is a scourge on humanity and for us to evolve and to continue to better ourselves as a race we need to fully leave behind these bronze age superstitions. And we need to actively work towards this, there is too much money, greed etc involved to expect it to just happen on its own.

Unfortunately, how we can do this? I do not yet know. Talking about it is at least a start.



I am an atheist that always likes a good debate
Please include @LogicFTW for responses to me
Tips on forum use. ▮ A.R. Member since 2016.

NewSkeptic's picture
I’ll let Mark Twain sum up

I’ll let Mark Twain sum up the great Fergie:

“No amount of evidence will ever persuade an idiot.”


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