When encountering others, in order to obtain a baseline, we initially presume they share similar tastes and interest as we do. We do this to move from the unknown to the known. If I was asking you to meet at a restaurant, I would initially propose restaurants I like. “Do you want to eat at Buffalo Wild Wings?” I would not propose Wendy’s (for example) because I don’t particularly care for their food.
Simply by listening to what restaurants I propose—you would learn what restaurants I like. Obviously, our interaction would provide me information about the other person (“No, I don’t like spicy food”) narrowing our choices and giving me more data.
Or if I was attempting to motivate you, I might first offer money (demonstrating I find money to be a powerful motivating factor) or sex (demonstrating I find sex to be a powerful motivating factor), etc. I often find, in divorce matters, those who accuse others, without any evidence, of infidelity are either contemplating it or engaging in it already. What they accuse others is demonstrative of what they are thinking themselves. “If I want to have an affair,” they are thinking, “presumably the only reason my spouse wants out of the marriage is that they want to have an affair.”
You may be aware the US Supreme Court ruled a Law School can withhold official status to a Christian student organization because the organization discriminated against others based upon religious beliefs and/or sexual orientation. The Christian organization required its members to sign a statement of faith and refrain from sexual activity, specifically homosexual activity. The Law School allowed the group to meet (and even provided facilities) but would not grant it official status due to its exclusivity policy. The Student Organization sued. And lost.
Mike Adams wrote an article in Townhall (H/T toCamels with Hammers) with an intriguing response:
I can’t stand atheists. And I plan to do something about them. Thankfully, the U.S. Supreme Court has given me a powerful tool to use in my war against the godless. Earlier this week, the Court ruled that a public university may require all student organizations to admit any student as a voting member or officer. The decision applies even to a student who is openly hostile to the group's fundamental beliefs.
So, when I get back to the secular university in August, I plan to round up the students I know who are most hostile to atheism. Then I’m going to get them to help me find atheist-haters willing to join atheist student groups across the South. I plan to use my young fundamentalist Christian warriors to undermine the mission of every group that disagrees with me on the existence of God.
I agree with the general reaction that most Secular groups would welcome Christians joining and would dramatically enjoy the interaction. But that wasn’t what struck me about this article.
It was the presumption that this would be hated by secular groups. That secular groups would fall in disarray, or be traumatized or forced to close up shop due to the “infiltration” of Christians. This says a great deal more about Mr. Adams and Christian organizations than it does about secular.
Apparently he believes if non-theists were allowed to join Christian gatherings, it would be so horrifying the Christian group would eventually fail. That non-theists absolutely, positively must be prevented from entering Christian sacred groups, because even a whiff of such theistic abstinence would cause the entire assemblage to crumble like a house of cards.
Therefore—because he is so terrified of allowing an atheist dare attend or [gasp!] join his Christian group—the secular group must equally be terrified.
One of the scariest—and pitiful—quotes from Mr. Adams: “I do not seek robust debate. I seek power over the godless heathen dissident.” How does one communicate with such a person? It amazed me at the time of my deconversion; it continues to amaze me. How many Christians are simply not interested in hearing alternative positions. They don’t want to know about possible contradictions in the New Testament texts. They don’t want to know scientific studies demonstrating evolution. They don’t want to hear any information, data, evidence, argument, point or iota about anything that in any way contradicts their preciously held belief.
They vehemently do not seek robust debate. They desire one thing only—the elimination of the non-theist. Either through conversion to their belief, OR destruction by judgment. There is no ground to allow the non-theist. (Humorously, they presume the non-theist feels the same way about them, and therefore presume there really is an Evil Atheist Conspiracy bringing all of its resources to bear to prevent them from receiving a tax deduction for their weekly $5 tithe.)
Now it is possible (I don’t know Mike Adams) this was written as satire. The point remains the same, he is still claiming this is his perception of secular groups, based upon his own underpinnings of fear.
Here is the point: There is no gain in discussing with the Mike Adams of the world. And there are a lot of them. We can be aware there are lurkers, wondering what our response would be, and reply appropriately, but for the vast majority they have no desire to have their beliefs pushed or prodded in any way.
And the easiest way to do that is bar the pushers and prodders at the door.