'Gun Violence' Or
'Morality In Schools'?
First of all Cliff, thank you for making this website. I won't tack on any extra praise, because that would comprise the bulk of the email; just thank you so very much. I've submitted a de-conversion story (thanks for posting it) and also a letter before, and I will continue to do so as I feel very strongly about atheism.
Anyway, I just wanted to write a letter to you to ask your thoughts about some of the issues going on in the U.S. today. As a Canadian, I am constantly saddened but mostly bewildered by the frequent gun violence in America, especially in schools. But this issue is not about guns, its about "morality in schools". Specifically, I notice that every time one of these things happens someone immediately jumps up and says "its because we keep God out of the schools!" Now obviously this is disgusting religious propaganda of course, but what are your thoughts? Do you ever think that the religious right will prevail (especially with Forrest Gump -- that is, Dubya Bush, in office)? And if so, what do you think that will mean for the rest of America? Agnostics and atheists, not to mention Buddhists, Jews and Muslims.
Thanks Cliff, keep up the good work.
From: "Positive Atheism Magazine" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: "Matthew Wong"
Subject: Re: Positive_Atheism_Letters_Section
Date: Thursday, March 08, 2001 5:30 AM
The two things that prevent me from completely abandoning hope for America's future are first America's inherent diversity, and secondly, the fact that by far the least church-going segment of our society is the under-30 crowd -- those who grew up playing with toy dinosaurs and listening to Boy George. The bulk of our fundamentalist Christian population consists mainly of the very poor and the elderly.
As for the recent school shootings in San Diego, one element of this story is conspicuous by its absence: mention of Brenda Spencer, who, in 1978 or so, shot almost two dozen small children and killed a janitor. Why? "I don't like Mondays," she told reporters. The punk-era rock group Boomtown Rats had a hit with a song titled, "I Don't Like Mondays," which is about Ms. Spencer -- who is, by the way, still languishing in a California women's prison. Now why are the elements in our society, those who exploit these tragedies, those who holler and wail and have conniption fits, those who pontificate about declining morality, those who want to post one religion's version of an ancient table of laws which was allegedly given on a certain mountain that cannot even be found today -- why are they not reminding us of what happened in 1978? It's because this fact makes their theory look bad: If there is no such thing as "the good old days," then their control-issue program for "restoration" is unneeded.
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