Archive for August 11th, 2005

The Village Atheist

I was raised in the Bible Belt and I always thought of myself as kind of the village atheist. I did not believe in the six-day creation or banning the sale of alcoholic beverages on Sunday. I am sure everybody will concentrate on this and miss what I am about to say.

The thing about the village atheist was that he was the VILLAGE atheist. You can be an atheist too, but you had better not attack the VILLAGE. You will find no nastier enemy than the village atheist if you attack the village itself.

Those who insulted the Bible Belt were absolutely astonished when I hit back with everything I had. Those Bible belters are MY people. When the self-styled “intellectual” attacked Bible-believing people like the people I was raised with, I hit back hard.

At the same time many a Bible Believer found himself a nice, convenient quote in the Bible to excuse himself for taking the attackers’ side.

So when Bob Jones decided to demand that the Confederate flag come down, he found a nice convenient quote from the Bible to justify it. I pointed out that that flag had been flying over the South Carolina State House for almost forty years when Bob Jones suddenly discovered that Bible verse.

I pointed out that that Bible verse had been there for almost two thousand years. But Bob Jones suddenly discovered that flag and the Bible verse the day that the Big Conservative Money turned on the flag.

The fact is that the village atheist isn’t a very good atheist. He likes to question the Bible, but if you insult Jesus he is likely to jump all over you.

The village atheist isn’t a very good atheist, but he also makes a lousy traitor, too. He can’t hide behind the bible the way a Bible Belter can.

No book can protect the village atheist from his conscience.


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