Top 11 Atheist Stories of 2015

Top 11 Atheist Stories of 2015


Over the past year, there were so many news stories in which religion played a central role. In some cases, atheists were affected directly. In others we saw just how awful religious beliefs could be. Which I think also affects us in some indirect way. So I made a list of the stories I felt were the most significant. And it’s slightly different one than the one I posted on my website earlier. I’d love to hear your feedback on it, especially if you think there are big stories that I missed. Number 11. Thousands leave the Mormon church in a mass exodus. After the Mormon church announced that gay people in same-sex relationships would soon be considered apostates. And their children, would be punished too by the church if they didn’t disavow their parents. Thousands of people submitted their resignations to the Mormon church in a single day. That was the last straw for them. All the sentimental reasons they may have had for remaining in the church; even though they longer believed in the theology; It didn’t matter any more. They were overtaken by a desire to break free from an institution that was actively denigrating people who had done nothing wrong. Let’s hope those dominos keep falling. Number ten. John Oliver exposes faith based fraud. In a brilliant segment criticizing Christian televangelists who con viewers out of their life savings; and the IRS for not going after them enough; John Oliver and his team at “Last Week Tonight” created an actual church with the sole purpose of taking people’s money. That money was eventually donated to Doctors Without Borders, but the point is, it didn’t need to be. “Our Lady of Perpetual Exemption”, exposed some of the worst practices in the Christian world. And became a church that atheists everywhere could embrace. Number nine. NFL star Arian Foster says he doesn’t believe in God. Arian Foster said, quote, “I don’t believe there’s a God” in “ESPN the Magazine” this year. Making him the highest profile openly atheist athlete in the country. Perhaps more importantly, it doesn’t seem to have hurt his image at all. Let’s just hope he recovers from his season-ending Achilles tendon injury and becomes a star player once again. Number eight. The Satanic Temple takes aim at religious freedom laws. This year, the Satanic Temple forced a Florida school district stop its Bible distributions; used the religious freedom argument to fight back against a Missouri law that forced women to wait 72 hours before obtaining an abortion And tried to get a Baphomet statue in any state capitol building where there was a ten commandments monument on the grounds. It seemed like they were everywhere this year. It got to the point where the term “Lucien’s Law” was created to describe the power of the temple’s spokesperson Lucien Greaves. He was, like, the “nuclear option” when it came to church-state separation cases; swooping in anytime Christians were trying to use the government to get special treatment. Number seven. An atheist kills three Muslims in Chapel HIll. This is a tragic story and the details are still somewhat shaky. But earlier this year an atheist; 46 year old Craig Stephen Hicks, killed three young Muslims in their apartment outside the University of North Carolina at Chapel HIll. Now, while their religious differences had not been reported as a cause for the crime, Hicks apparently really was frustrated over parking spaces. There’s no denying where he stood on the God question. For a while, at least, we had to consider the fact that a man who likes the same authors, bloggers, You Tubers and memes that so many of us do was responsible for this despicable crime. Whatever the motive, turns out to be, you can bet this is one of those cases that people will be holding over the heads of atheists, whether we deserve it or not for years to come. Number six. The rise of prayer shaming. After 14 people were killed in San Bernardino California, the New York Daily News front cover said what so many atheists have been thinking for so long. It said that prayer isn’t a good enough response after a tragedy; and God isn’t fixing this. Especially when those platitudes come from politicians who have the ability to enact gun control legislation, but refuse to do anything about it. Their thoughts and prayers ring hollow. And this year they were finally called out on it. To be clear, prayer shaming doesn’t mean people can’t pray as a way to grieve. But it properly criticizes those who offer only meaningless gestures in lieu of meaningful responses. Number five. The Supreme Court legalizes marriage equality. The only arguments you seem to hear now-a-days as to why marriage equality should not be legal, comes from religious people pointing to their holy books. And the Supreme Court’s Ogberfell ruling showed that there really is no objective case for why marriage rights should be denied to same sex couples. In some ways, it must have been a relief for social conservatives who must know that their fighting a losing battle here. If they want to, they can now just say “the law’s the law” and move on to other topics. If anything the court’s decision will only hasten acceptance of same sex marriage making it that much harder for the religious right to argue that gay marriage is somehow a threat to society. But we all know they’re still gonna try to make that case. And you know what that means? It means that its gonna be that much easier in the future for young people to walk away from a faith that fails on the simplest moral question of our time. Number four. The Charlie Hebdo cartoonists are killed In January the cartoonists at Charlie Hebdo were killed in their Paris offices by Islamic extremists who were offended that the magazine poked fun at their beleifs. That happened even tough the cartoonists routinely satirized other religions. In fact, even more so than Islam. As if the murders weren’t bad encouth What was really disturbing to me, as well, were some of the conversations taking place after the slaughter. People were saying “maybe we should ban blasphemy”. And some people even went to far as to suggest that the cartoonists brought this upon themselves. Number three. Bangladeshi bloggers are attacked and killed for their views. Beginning in February with Dr. Avijit Roy, and then happening every couple of months or so after that, atheist bloggers in Bangladesh, and some people connected to them, were systematically slaughtered by Islamic terrorists who were offended by things they had written. Government officials there were slow to arrest anyone. And in some cases they even blamed the atheists for criticizing Islam. There are still several names on a hit list circulating in social media. And those people are either trying to het the hell out of the country, or just avoid a gruesome fate of their own. We don’t know how many more people are going to be murdered. But it’s almost a safe bet now that the death count is only going to go up in the next year. This is the price they pay for criticizing religion in a country where free speech is a farce. We should be grateful to live in a nation where, you know, for all of its flaws at least we don’t have to fear for our lives when we criticize the majority’s sacred beliefs. Number two. Josh Duggar’s hypocrisy is exposed. You know, it would have been bad enough if we were just talking about how Josh Duggar molested some of his sisters more than a decade ago. But after “In Touch” magazine revealed a massive cover up by his parents, sponsors of their TV show fled. And TLC eventually cancelled “19 Kids and counting” And all of that was before we found out Josh was trying to meet women on “Ashley Madison” and he’d slept with porn stars whom he roughed up beyond anything that was consentual. For a family known for their “Christian values”, who actually campaigned against anti-discrimination laws by using the argument that transgender people were sexual predators; their collapse was our Schadenfreude. Josh Duggar’s downfall was arguably the biggest example of Christian hypocrisy since Pastor Ted Haggard was caught seeing a male escort. Number one. Kim Davis becomes a punchline. The Kentucky clerk decided that her Christian views trumped secular laws, even though she was in a government position. By the time Kim Davis finished her six day stint in jail and gay couples could finally get married in Rowan county, 74 percent of Americans, many of whom were Christian, agreed that equality under the law was more important than someone’s personal “religious” freedoms. By overstepping her bounds, Davis actually showed that religious freedom needs limits. I mean, she became the obstacle for loving gay couples who wanted nothing more than the marriage certificate that they were legally entitled to. It was another PR disaster for the religious right and another nail in the coffin for their supposed values. My name is Hemant Metha and I write at friendlyatheist.com. What do you want to see a video about? Let us know in the comments below and we’ll be sure to check it out. And don’t forget to subscribe.

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  1. When it comes to Kim Davis, the dumbest response I've seen is that gay people "are enforcing their beliefs onto Kim davis". I can't wait to see what 2016 holds for atheists.

  2. I hope Singapore allows gay marriage soon. I have family and friends who can't even be open about their own relationships. Good for Yu America, I hope we get it soon.

  3. 8. Atheistic Satanists believe in individuality, and religious freedom. They don't, however, want it to take up other's space. They don't want people to use it as an advantage. They are not evil. Theistic Satanists, on the other hand, nope, nope, and nope. Cases of robbery, slaugher, and rape.

  4. regarding this marriage "equality" i am concerned, if straight people are allowed to same-sex marriages.
    nobody cared to give me an exact answer so far.

  5. Hemant, My wife and I are new to your site…or, late. Semantics aside, we admire you and, of course, your logical and rational discussions and assessments of various religionist's/atheist's dogma (or lack thereof). I wonder, in regards to Scientology, what might we learn from you? Is it a 'religion' or a 'movement', is it God, as alien-Spaceship as a seeding vessel? I'm going to browse your posts and maybe I'll find you have covered this but, if not….would it relate to the topic?

  6. I hate people. In Oklahoma City, there was one of those statues actually built. But it was soon vandalized. The cops were like "meh", nobody got in trouble, and they moved the ten commandments statue two blocks down the street. Bullshit.

  7. Okay, here a strange thought for an atheist to have, What if there is a divine or higher being or more likely beings,!
    Now stick with me here and follow the logic. Would they be the sort to be like the god of Abraham followers claim , but were the basis of many religions (and no I'm not talking spacemen) but over the years the message has got corrupted and altered by men and the real purpose of existence is to learn, see the complexity of the universe and gain knowledge, keep pushing back the boundaries, cut through the crap of ignorance and the perversion of the message with a clear driving goal,never stopping and just saying it;s' the god of the gaps and giving up.
    We are mean or designed t to keep looking for more answers, until we understand the whole of 'creation'. Then and only then are those enlightened enough (by knowledge and science) are deemed worthy enough to join these 'deities' or higher beings as equals (note, not servants). The ignorant or god fearing bible thumper's or religious zealots are just ignored and left to their own devices. To wallow in their ignorance and left in the world of their own making, those who have taken the leap into knowledge are taken up to be one with the universe.
    Now it's all bullshit of course and full of obvious plot holes, but it's as valid a proposition as the one god,, (be good and you'll have a rapture or burn in hell) concept, Even better because you have to earn your right to ascended by using your intelligence and there is a far less need of a controlling dogma nor any threat of punishment, for those who choose to follow a path of ignorance or worship, instead of questing for knowledge.All that happens to them is they are left behind, while those 'worthy'evolve. The side affect would be more science leading to the betterment of all. It's just sad that the Universe isn't sentient, but feck it, we only have one life, I'll enjoy mine without the need of the crutch. of a religion.

  8. I wish I had thought of making a video like this, I remember a lot of these stories! Especially number 10.

    I had an arguement against a "black guy" who claimed he was an atheist try to debate me that homosexuality was wrong on Debate.org, but he lost. Funny thing is, he had somewhere around 10-15 or more debates with others for the exact same topic. I think he may had been lying that he was an atheist but not all arguments come from religious sources. Some people think it is wrong because they think it is icky and says its where aids comes from etc etc.

    He was so desperate to show his belief was valid, that he kept doing nothing but arguing that one thing with everyone who would accept his challenge.

    You did forget one good story. It is more recent though so maybe that is why it is not here. But there was a black woman who killed an atheist because she was an atheist and kept her body on her couch for 3 days as a trophy from god.

  9. i think it says a lot that albert einstein believes in the same type of god that psychics normally describe as "source" a non-human higher power, which is more of an energy that connects everything

  10. Hello, I am a long time Atheist and I have faced many challenges and ridicule over my refusal to believe unproven nonsense (from any religion). What I would love to hear your thoughts on is what I term as "Thinking Atheists" V.S. unthinking Atheists.
    A thinking Atheist, in my malleable opinion, is an Atheist that refuses to believe in any religion that can provide solid proof for all of its claims, but is also open-minded and actively seeks the truth. An unthinking Atheist is the the type that is close-minded and (from my perspective) seems to simply claim to be an Atheist for some type of shock value or out of anger toward their previously taught religious beliefs.

    I would very much love to hear your thoughts on this subject. If you have already covered this topic I am interested in how your viewpoint has changed and what you think can be done to help our closed-minded compatriots jump start their minds!

  11. If you let someone's personal religious beliefs affect you your a fucking bitch who has way too much time on their hands and you have your own head up your ass

  12. I kind of missed the Mormon story, I think I glanced over it as a "not big deal", I think I missed the "thousands" part. Whoops

  13. You care to share what you think about the increasing atheist population. What are all the reasons and do you think we will ever have a atheist majority society?

  14. Yo Hemant, thanks for your Videos! Even though I am a Christian I think that we need far deeper reflection of faith. We shouldn't run away from intellectual (and I don't mean ken ham "intellectual") debating and reflecting! Greetings from Europe. Moe

  15. Hey, Hemant, I always enjoy watching your video.
    I would like to see the next video if you can share your thoughts on Atheist vs Sufi Philosophy.
    I am looking forward.

  16. Do you want to speak about an atheist killed three Muslims? Why you don't talk about the thousands of atheists killed on Muslims countries?

  17. not to be so mean but I'm a christian and I completely respect your religious beliefs but mother fucker
    how in the world did a explosion created a body so perfect that your neurons your brain every single vain
    have you ever heard of the covenant vain it runs from your left hand finger to your Hart that's where we got the tradition to put the ring on the left hand finger just saying like I said I completely respect your discussion.

  18. People shouldn't get married in general I feel bad for gays or straights who think marriage is a good thing. You got your wish so have fun when your wife or husband takes have your stuff because they are unhappy way to go morons.

  19. Make a vid on how Christians ask atheists how the Big Bang theory was all begun and started. Then tell how the same thing is with God. When was God created? How? If science tells us that there is a start and end to everything then when did God evolve?….Randomly?

  20. I think the Josh Duggar news should be lower down the list and the legalization of same sex marriage should be the number 1 or 2.

  21. my friends are atheist but they don't care that im religious those are what i call "good atheist" you're the atheist i call "bad atheist".

  22. The bible is true because the bible said so

    If there is a sticky note on a shoe saying "I'm an apple" then that shoe is actually an apple according to Christians

  23. jesus is going to come to earth and all the athiest is going to look guilty because there are so many hints that god has gave us to tell us that he is real and the heaven are real and that jesus is real. im not hating on anyone im just stating my opinion. and one of the hints that he is real is because i got to this church that plays live music and we pray but it is also very fun. a lot of people dont believe is religion because they think that church is very boring but let me tell you i did not like church a wile ago because i thought it was boring but afrter i went to one church in preticular that has loud live music and nobody judges you and you feel like your at home and when im singing the songs i get a holy presence that makes me feel like i have to cry but im not sad im happy. so i sujest if you are going through a hard time in your life just open up a bible and start reading and you will thank me one day when jesus comes to earth

  24. About the football thing… If you want to be a NFL player you don't just sit at home praying that you will get drafted even tho you only watch football… Getting into the NFL involves hard work and determination not prayer…

  25. Did anyone notice the wedding band on his finger? I he "believes" in love. Then he's not an atheist. Why. He believes in something or am I wrong?

  26. As an Oklahoman atheist, I was really disappointed that I couldn't take my kids to see the Baphomet statue next to the Ten Commandments at the state capital. It would have made such a wonderful bonding experience.

  27. I had forgotten that Charlie Ebdo occurred in 2015. Probably the greatest tragedy for me because of how the Pope basically said they had it coming. People want to like the new Pope, but I just can't.

  28. Hey. I'm thirteen. And you raised some few points. But, what you don't understand is, Christianity is not truly a religion. You are supposed to have a relationship with Jesus, and trust Him. But, like in every group, there are some weird, 'Christians', who have done weird things, and split the whole group into these 'sub-groups' like Baptist, or Orthodox, or Catholic etc. when the whole point of Church, is fellowship with other believers, and all of them coming together as one, to worship and praise the living God, and to thank Him, for all that He had done for us. Atheists and Agnostics, tend to believe in 'coincidence'. But actually, everything that happened was indicated and layed out by God Himself. Like your car not starting, which causes you to be late, or your waking up late. But what you don't know, is that God is protecting you from certain death.

  29. I'm athiest and I still don't agree with gay marriage, it goes against science and the reproduction that got us where we are today

  30. I think a video about how freedom of religion really works would be great. A lot of Christians interpret freedom of religion as their right to force their religion on to us. They don't understand, or don't want to understand that freedom of religion means we can all practice whatever religion we want under constitutional law. But nobody can force their religion onto anybody else, though they can express their religious beliefs publicly. And above all, Congress cannot establish a law favoring or disfavoring any religious beliefs. I would like to hear your thoughts on this subject.

  31. I love JackynGkenn's outdo song(not sure if she still uses it) it's all like!

    "There's no gaaaawwd! He doesn't exists so yeah!" And I forget the rest.

  32. Atheists claim that Christians are self-righteous, ignorant of history, and humorless, while they themselves fervently display daily those same behaviors of which they so vehemently accuse others. It's the pinnacle of lunacy to spend your whole life being angry at and spewing hatred about a Being you claim does not exist, a Being you work so diligently to suppress, while living a life of complete contradiction characterized by the insulting and suppression of others in an absolutely vain attempt to justify the miserable and misery-breeding hellbound condition of your lost soul. Brights, indeed? Dim bulbs is more like it – "This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness more than the Light, for their deeds were evil." – John 3:19 www.areyouagoodperson.org

  33. So happy to know I am not alone in seeing how religion fucks the world up. In the Philippines we are so oppressed because the church is always interfering with state. It is uncommon to be an atheist here, especially a woman atheist. Thanks to channels like these! There is hope in the world! 🙂

  34. The only type of being that is truly as good as "God" is said to be, are dogs. Dogs are just good at heart man (:

  35. I've seen your videos and I just want to know why do you hate god? Did something bad happen to you as a youngster? Maybe the love has left your heart?

  36. i'm not sure what i believe anymore but i'm glad the religious got kicked in the can this year. there's no need for the bigotry.

  37. If there is no God then what sustains an essentially ordered causal series? For example, the rock whose potential to move is actualised by a stick which is in turn actualised by a hand which is in turn actualised by the muscles which is then actualised by the nervous system etc etc. It can't go on much further. The nervous system is then actualised by the neurons in the brain which is then actualised by the bio chemistry in the body which is then actualised by … There is really only atomic structure and then quantum mechanics before we hit the deepest layer of the physical universe that we know of. Perhaps there are a few more layers we don't know about yet. To say that this type of series will go onto infinity will not explain anything. At this level there must be something which does not need to be actualised by something else but is just pure act itself. Something which is able to act of its own accord but has no potential to be moved by something else. If there is no God then what is the source of change since each item in the series has no power of its own to change the next in line and the line does not go on to infinity. If you take something away then the series stops. There must be something which is able to change other things but is unchangeable itself. This unchangeable changer is what sustains all the essentially ordered causal series we see around us.

  38. How do you argue something that doesn't exsist you are the worst atheist if you feel the need to defend or explain what you call a beleif

  39. universal where it's came from 🕙🕤 📅📏📝💻📝📏📉📈📄📃🚅🚄🚓🚒. 🐓🐁🐈🐩🐢. 🇮🇹🇮🇸🇮🇷🇮🇶. atheism.

  40. I support same-sex marriage but I think the Spring Court may, have overstepped its Authority. since marriage is state recognized as the state issues license according to the Constitution state has the right to recognize as it chooses. I'm against state recognize marriages anyway I think they should be independent contracts negotiated between the parties and then call it whatever they want.

  41. i dont know if this guy is with God or not but if he is he has a brain if hes not then ill be watching him go hell

  42. What confuses me the most about religion is that people are so willing to believe a book that was written around two thousand years ago, when they had little sense of science, mathematics, history, geography, etc, but are totally willing to cast aside the beliefs of the Romans and Greeks and ancient Egyptians, because it's 'outdated' and 'it's obviously just mythology'. It makes absolutely no sense to say that one book with just as much mystery surrounding it is better than another written at exactly the same time.

  43. Over time this channel has become so much more ignorant and less fair. You hate on and downright disregard religion. I found your channel and was excited, but I was watching your early videos and now that I've seen more recent content you seem more like a typical one who feels he has superior knowledge.

  44. I was cool with you until you mention gun control. Gun control doesn't fix the issue, just as prayer doesn't prevent horrible acts of violence.

  45. Number 10 is reserved I think mostly for Americans.
    At least here in the Netherlands and countries around it don't deal with this bullshit, this kind of cheap way to make a commercial joke of your religion is absurd.
    People laugh at what kind of commercial joke America made out of their most prominent religion. My grandparents were Christians but held more respect for their religion than that. They would be disgusted.

    I might be an Atheist but I still respect people for their religion and especially when they uphold moral values towards their religion. This is just cheap disgusting crap trying convince people using your religion to donate money. So you can become a millionaire. Selfish sociopath.
    Which person with respect towards their religion does that? Did they even take their holy book out of the plastic?

    These commercial bulllshitters use their religion as a tool to take money from the weak. How holy.

  46. How about a show on crazy things that atheists said and did? That should be entertaining, coming from another atheist. Time for some introspection and reflection on our own camp?

  47. When it comes to marriage we shouldn't be debating gay marriage. We should be asking if state sanctioned marriage is a good idea. Marriage grants people special rights. Rights that I may never have. So why should the state rubber stamp someone's relationship? Why should it be limited to two people? It's not really marriage quality if people in plural relationships can't get married. I think we should stop state sanctioned marriage. Stop giving people special rights.

  48. Yay you go man fucking all others the father soviet is the only real god but not a god of higher Bing a god of faith as in the powers to move foreword under one banner the mighty father soviet the balance between communism and sovietism all hail father soviet

  49. isnt marriage a bond between two people before god? so what the fuck does it matter if two people marry? its all a sham for the churches to make money,so why support marriage at all?

  50. If the only books you read are only religious ones, then you need to get out more same goes for solely atheist book readers who only read Atheist materials

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