Tuesday, July 26, 2011

How Atheists Can Condemn Breivik, Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, Etc.

A familiar argument--stupid and vicious though it is--from one of our humble moral superiors:
Frankly, I don’t really care whether or not Breivik was a fundamentalist Christian or a fanatical Evolutionist. I don’t want to know why he did it or what went wrong in his life. He has forfeited any right to our curiosity. This man should merely be condemned for such horrific acts of evil: man-made justice will never be enough, but that’s alright, he will face true Divine Justice in the next life however we deal with him for the rest of his life on this planet.

The more interesting point is this: how can any atheist condemn Breivik in terms that can be reconciled with their worldview? If life is meaningless and we face oblivion then nothing really matters – there is no wrong or right, because there is no Good or Evil: even the purpose we forge for ourselves is an act of self-deception if the atheistic worldview is true.
Atheism is not my worldview, or at least it's not all of my worldview. My worldview is based on Western liberal democratic principles. What's more, there is absolutely no contradiction between
The conclusion that there was no god who poofed people into existence.
The proposition that all people deserve civil equality and political representation.
The lesson: Just because you believe in micro-managing, invisible tyrants doesn't mean you possess sole authority to recognize and comment on human evil.

Get over yourselves, already!

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