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Sunday, August 1, 2010
Raising Atheists or What, I'm Not Getting Laid?
Oh, did I mention that I'm raising my kids as Atheists?
There is some debate on what to call the process of raising kids in a non-god(s) household. I've heard folks say that they are raising: freethinkers or critical thinkers. Me? I'm OK with Atheists. That's fine you say tomato I say tomato - our children have a lower chance of being abused because they don't go to some authoritarian, superstitious institution know as: church, synagogue, or mosque.
I do have a beef with are those parents who say, "I'll just let my child to make their own choice," and leave it at that. At home there isn't any real discussion of critical thinking (in any area) and the child is expected to pick up those skills at school (my main lesson at school was avoiding ass kickings). I call if lazy Atheism. It's kinda like the parents are letting their hands off the wheel in this particular area of raising their child. Well, this will come to a surprise to many, but the kid is going to make his/her own decisions anyway. A parent's job is to make sure their child has the cognitive tools to make smart decisions.
Do you know why it's important for young people to have those cognitive skills?
Religious loonies prey on the young, the weak, and the stupid.
Having been young, weak, and stupid I know these things. What? Is this a natural segue into one of my personal tales of being young, weak, and stupid? Yes. Yes it is.
I should say that I'm not making this up.
I was 19 and decided to backpack around the UK for a month. Realizing that there are strength in numbers I tried to convince some of my friends to journey along with me. Many promised they would, none did. Undaunted I threw a variety of useful stuff into an army duffle bag (that army poncho came in handy) and off I went to London. I did the youth hostel thing (if you're travelling on the cheap it's a good deal) and quickly realized that I was not a second class citizen (or subject - the local term) and I could drink alcohol. I found that I could drink a lot of alcohol too. Good times. However, this meant that I was young, weak, stupid, and drunk.
I was walking down a street in London on lovely afternoon having done some geek - heavy touring (I think I had been to the British Museum that day) and looking for a decent pub for lunch and a pint. Suddenly, this attractive woman in her mid twenties started talking to me. I really don't know what her opening line was, she was pretty and I was listening. After a minute or two we walked over to a coffeehouse/bookstore that had just opened. It seemed like a normal non-crazy place at first.
Then she eased into the God talk.
Then she talked to me about the wondrous Reverend Sun Myung Moon.
Yes, she was a Moonie and I had found myself in a den of crazy cultists.
Know what? I didn't care. This was the closest chance of me getting sex for a while. I wouldn't have cared if she sacrificed kittens to her Dark Overlord Bob. I was in it to win it.
Obviously, it didn't work out in my favor. It turns out that she had a husband who was a black belt in some martial art and he was competing in Germany. I learned that after going through their brainwashing video series (cheap production values - I wasn't impressed). On the plus side, they did feed me. I attended a spaghetti dinner at their main cultist hive in Leicester Sq and watched the movie Ghandi. She was a tad disappointed that I decided to go back to the States and not stay with them in the hive. Meh, no one got what they wanted.
There is no moral.
This is Purgatory.