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Being Confronted With Religion At Every Turn


godlesssinner
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I just attended wedding in which I was asked to bow my head to pray a total of THREE times. God was mentioned so incessantly, you would think that it were a preacher officiating, instead of the county judge. I’ve learned to avoid funeral services for this reason, but will keep in mind to avoid wedding ceremonies in the future. It’s so insidious. I drive a good distance to school four times a week. I’ve seriously considered making a game out of all the religious crap that confronts me along the way. I don’t lie when I say that I can’t go a mile without seeing a religious sign, symbol, or church. I pass two businesses (a restaurant and a car wash) with Jesus fishes on their signage (and bible verses within them). Another business (an automotive shop) features a cross on its sign. There’s a church every stone’s throw and between them, signs advertising the churches themselves. Never mind all the jeebus fishes I see on the backs of so many vehicles. Then, upon arriving in the town where I attend school, I’m confronted with an enormous cross overlooking the town. If I turn on the radio, I flip through a number of religious stations-sermons, Christian talk shows, and gospel music. Then, as if it all weren’t enough, the program that I’m currently in is headed by an instructor who is Christian and it appears that every one of my classmates is as well (one in particular seems especially overzealous). So you can imagine how much discussion about faith, prayer, and Jeebus I endure on an almost daily basis. I couldn’t even escape it at a local steakhouse this evening: crosses adorned the freakin’ walls.

 

In a nutshell, I think I may go crazy.

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And I apologize for the HUGE topic headline. Not sure how to go back and change it, so if someone could clue me in on how to edit, I will gladly do so.

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maybe you should consider emigrating to the UK, or other European country. A sort of Pilgrim Fathers in reverse :).

 

Professing Christians are a small minority here, and are widely regarded as 'nutters', or at least mildly deranged.

 

I think I've seen more Darwin fishes than Jesus ones recently.

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Andy, the thought of emigrating elsewhere has occurred to me, for a number of reasons. Unfortunately, just about every country that isn't the United States actually has strict immigration laws, actually enforces those laws, and has strict criteria (as far as which profession you're in so that you're not putting a local person out of work) about who they will let in. My profession isn't one of those that is really critical to human survival; that combined with the fact that my family and I only speak English means I'm pretty much stuck here in the States.

 

However, I will note that the northeastern United States is less overtly religious than some other parts of the country; I don't recall seeing any religious billboards recently, and most of the businesses here are pretty secular. If you're a professional with a college degree, you also have a fair shot at getting a job here, but cost of living here can be quite high.

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Guest Babylonian Dream

I feel ya. I pass by churches with crosses reaching for the sky on the way to work. Largest damn wastes of stone I ever did see. Not taller than the cooler buildings in my city though. Also, I have a friend at work who tells me how God answered her prayers. She didn't tell me what he did for those starving African children though :(

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I just spent five years in Australia with my husband. The way they handle religion down there is soooo much better. I met a few Catholics, most of whom were lapsed. All of our really close friends except for one are atheists, and the one is a Catholic married to an atheist.

 

It was paradise!

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I went to Buffalo NY recently and was a passenger in the car when we saw two people with a megaphone preaching Jesus crap on a street corner.

How rude.

So when we drove past I opened my window and yelled, "HE'S DEAD. LET GO"

 

Well I made my wife and the driver laugh anyway:)

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Over here in the UK, it's like total hyprocrisy. People are laughed at for their religious beliefs and less people are going to Church, but the moment someone dies, they flock in their droves.

 

When people here describe God, it's not even the Christian God, but more like a New Age type of God. Yet they happily call themselves Christians. Utter hypocrisy. Another annoying element of religion.

 

At least the USA are honest about it, even though their fundamentalism is frightening.

 

 

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I went to Buffalo NY recently and was a passenger in the car when we saw two people with a megaphone preaching Jesus crap on a street corner.

How rude.

So when we drove past I opened my window and yelled, "HE'S DEAD. LET GO"

 

Well I made my wife and the driver laugh anyway:)

 

Wow, Alpha! That's a great story. In my experiences with Buffalo I've never encountered that, although the street-corner-shouting types tend to come to big cities because they're such dens of vice and villainy. They even came to my hometown pretty often because it was the biggest in the area, but it only has a population of about 18,000, and the "downtown district" where they set up was only a block long!

 

To the OP, I feel overwhelmed by the pervasiveness of Christianity in American society but I don't encounter anything nearly that bad in NY. We recently took a family vacation to Virginia and I was surprised by all the church billboards there were. At a festival recently the Center for Inquiry had a booth which I stopped by, and they are planning on putting up billboards that say "You don't need God--to hope, to care, to love, to live. www.livingwithoutreligion.org" I would rather see those than Christian billboards, but I think I would rather see advertisements for McDonalds and Holiday Inn than either of those.

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Here in the south it's disturbing how many fundamentalists there are. It's actually more than disturbing, it's scary. You try to stay away from them, but there's so many that chances you're going to run across one now and again. And you have no idea what they're going to do. They live in their own private crazy-world, so you never know when they're going to do something crazy. If you're unfortunate enough to have to work with them or something similar, you have to hide who you really are because they'll try to fire you or worse. It is kind of like a nightmare. It's psycho-world in the southern US.

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Here in the south it's disturbing how many fundamentalists there are. It's actually more than disturbing, it's scary. You try to stay away from them, but there's so many that chances you're going to run across one now and again. And you have no idea what they're going to do. They live in their own private crazy-world, so you never know when they're going to do something crazy. If you're unfortunate enough to have to work with them or something similar, you have to hide who you really are because they'll try to fire you or worse. It is kind of like a nightmare. It's psycho-world in the southern US.

 

Is there an emoticon for hiding under the couch??

 

There go my dreams of moving somewhere warmer. I'm still holding out hope for the West Coast, though, because there they seem to have both kinds of crazy. In general, I think NY is one of the best states for atheists, at least in the cities. Still, that's pretty sad considering the overwhelming majority of Christians there are here. I much preferred the UK atmosphere, though I didn't live there long. I would love it if religion didn't enter my life except over drinks with a close friend or on the internet with relative strangers. But maybe I'm just burnt out and outnumbered, and my feelings about it will change later. Hmm....

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There go my dreams of moving somewhere warmer. .

 

 

Arizona and New Mexico are warm, and they have loads of New Agers, who believe some pretty nutty stuff but are really nice and peace loving and don't have a tendency to try and convert. Worst case scenario, they can be a bit condescending with their belief that they are enlightened, but I'll take that over Christian and Muslim fundies any day of the week.

 

 

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There's a local RV dealer here who, instead of, you know, using his business's sign to advertise his latest deals, makes it a point to put up theological and religious messages for everyone to read as they drive by. And he has the Jeebus fish, of course, printed up there below the name of the business. (He's not alone on that last point around here.)

 

There's also the nutty "Bible-believing" Baptist church which has its sign right next to the freeway so they can spew their bullshit to all the commuters and other travelers. My aunt goes there...:Doh:

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i feel your pain, i live in arkansas and you cant get away... ever. it gets very tiering after a while but we must march on my brothers and ma sisters :wicked:

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There go my dreams of moving somewhere warmer. .

 

 

Arizona and New Mexico are warm, and they have loads of New Agers, who believe some pretty nutty stuff but are really nice and peace loving and don't have a tendency to try and convert. Worst case scenario, they can be a bit condescending with their belief that they are enlightened, but I'll take that over Christian and Muslim fundies any day of the week.

 

 

 

Thanks! That's good to know, and sounds like a fun atmosphere. I have a soft spot for New Agers. :-) I just heard some great stuff about an Arizona road trip someone took, which is making me want to visit more and more. I've never been to the southwest US, and I want to see so much that I imagine living there for a few years is the only way to do it.

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maybe you should consider emigrating to the UK, or other European country. A sort of Pilgrim Fathers in reverse

 

You know, the thought has definitely crossed my mind a time or two. Sweden sounds pretty ideal. Unfortunately, even leaving the state seems unlikely. My s.o. was born and raised here-and while I've broached the subject of moving several times, I don't think he ever will. I love the man dearly and I do appreciate living so close to my sole living parent (she's the reason I ended up back in Texas). But the uber-religiosity really gets to me. I do my best to ignore it, but I get the point where I can't take one more Jesus fish. I have this persistent feeling that I'm an outsider and it's because I am. I'm a childfree atheist living in a pronatalist, Christian society. I'm not sure where I "belong" but it sure as hell isn't here.

 

Professing Christians are a small minority here, and are widely regarded as 'nutters', or at least mildly deranged

 

Delusional thinkers regarded as delusional? Surely you jest!

 

There's a local RV dealer here who, instead of, you know, using his business's sign to advertise his latest deals, makes it a point to put up theological and religious messages for everyone to read as they drive by. And he has the Jeebus fish, of course, printed up there below the name of the business. (He's not alone on that last point around here.)

 

Ah, jeez. You know, it really irks me that these people feel so smug and secure in their religious (and political beliefs) that they can use their businesses as a platform for them and not fear retaliation, or even alienation of customers. They're not worried about the one or two people who might disagree with them. The asshole that uses his shop's business windows to scrawl out a new Obama rant each week certainly isn't worried. I would really love to slap an upside down dead Jesus fish (with a little x for the eye, instead of a cross) on the back of my car, but wouldn't, for fear of walking out of the grocery store to find my window smashed in.

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There's a local RV dealer here who, instead of, you know, using his business's sign to advertise his latest deals, makes it a point to put up theological and religious messages for everyone to read as they drive by. And he has the Jeebus fish, of course, printed up there below the name of the business. (He's not alone on that last point around here.)

 

Haha I drive by that sign every day to work! The latest one is, "The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing." Wendybanghead.gif

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There's a local RV dealer here who, instead of, you know, using his business's sign to advertise his latest deals,

 

Just before Nampa if you are coming from Boise, right? That guy's been doing it for 40 years if that's the case.

 

There's also the nutty "Bible-believing" Baptist church which has its sign right next to the freeway so they can spew their bullshit to all the commuters and other

 

Yeah, I remember that one too. It hasn't been around nearly as long as the RV guy, but the signs are just as obnoxious.

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There's a local RV dealer here who, instead of, you know, using his business's sign to advertise his latest deals,

 

Just before Nampa if you are coming from Boise, right? That guy's been doing it for 40 years if that's the case.

 

There's more than one? :twitch: The one I'm referring to is located in Garden City on Chinden.

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There's a local RV dealer here who, instead of, you know, using his business's sign to advertise his latest deals,

 

Just before Nampa if you are coming from Boise, right? That guy's been doing it for 40 years if that's the case.

 

There's more than one? :twitch: The one I'm referring to is located in Garden City on Chinden.

 

Hmmm, I don't remember one on Chinden. But that's usually a busy road so I was probably paying too much attention to the traffic to notice the billboards there.

 

But there are/or at least were, two major billboards on I-84 between Nampa and Boise trying to save the commuters; one an RV dealer and the other a Baptist church.

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