It’s the eleventh anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy and it will be the subject of all of today’s talk shows. The very thought of everything involved in the event… from the destruction of the World Trade Center, the crash into the Pentagon and the plane that went down in a Pennsylvania field. I remember the father of one of Buddy’s friends when we lived in Marlborough,CT, who had made his monthly business trip to NYC and died in the attack… which means not only did it happen, but I knew someone killed in the tragedy.
We are at war in the Middle East… still going after Al Qaeda. It is the longest war in our history and seems to go on forever. After the loss of citizens on 9/11, we continue to lose even more Americans because of the attack. I ask my self: what have we become?
I will try to put the day out of my mind. I have thought about it so much over the past eleven years. I am just crestfallen to find it on my mind again.
- Six words for 9/11 (pbs.org)
- The Morning of September 11, 2001 Through My Eyes (re-post) (pumabydesign001.com)
- “The things I wish I hadn’t learned” (thethingsihavelearnedblog.com)
- When Death Came From The Sky (poemsandponderings.wordpress.com)
- Patriot Day 2012 (nebraskaenergyobserver.wordpress.com)
- US Commemorates 9/11 Attacks on 11th Anniversary (news92fm.com)
- WTC Building 7: controlled demolition? Hardly (halfbyteblog.wordpress.com)
Let me start with a statement on my own religious beliefs: I am an atheist in the Stephen Hawking vein…there has been nothing in centuries of scientific discovery to prove the existence of God, nor are the mythological concepts of Heaven, Hell or any “afterlife” at all a reality. OK?
The proposal to make a cross shaped piece of twisted beams from the World Trade Center into a monument in a public space supporting Christianity triggered a response by some atheists that they should have an equivalent monument caused a controversy that Fox News covered. Let me also state my view here: neither of these concepts are supported by me. People’s beliefs should be private things in a free society and not be inflicted on others.
So, when I read this post on the American Atheist‘s blog (and, btw, this is an organization I’m not a member of… organized atheism is just another religion) about their Communications Director appearing on Fox News and the responses that were posted by listeners, I felt unsafe:
FOX News readers on Facebook started going off after Blair Scott, Communications Director for American Atheists, appeared on America Live with Megyn Kelly. Blair reports that when he returned home from his local FOX station for the interview that his voice mail was full of messages and his inbox had almost 200 hateful messages. “I can always tell when someone from American Atheists is on FOX news, because my Inbox explodes with hate email,” said Blair.
We can talk about the issues about this, but our friend William Hamby has put it well over at the Examiner. In addition, Practical Doubt was able to capture some more as well. Unfortunately, they blacked out the names of the guilty.
Moderators on FOX News’ Facebook page had been trying diligently to delete the violent threats, but not before they were screen-captured by a diligent American Atheists member named Robert Posey.
So how direct are these statements posted as comments on the Fox News Facebook Page? These were some of Posey’s captures before Fox had them deleted (and these do NOT have the poster’s names blacked out… as AA says, people should have responsibility for what they say):
What’s scary as well is the amount of support agreements they get from other readers. It is a good move that Fox is eliminating these as they catch them (why they don’t just set the keywords on their spam list, or set all comments to be reviewed before posting as I do on this blog, is confusing.) However, thousands, and perhaps millions of people see them’ and as William Hamby says in the Atlanta Atheist Examiner:
In a week or two, that Facebook page will be clean swept of any threats or incitements to violence. If anyone goes back to read it, they’ll see Christians and atheists arguing — not always politely, but without threats. The words on the page will be gone. But for me and my fellow atheists, they will live on as long as we live.
When I think of lunatics who have been able to kill groups of people based on the lunacy of extreme beliefs, I realize how the promotion of such concepts can trigger dangerous responses. I also realize that by printing some of these here, I may be doing the same thing… however this will happen here once and it will give you an idea of what is happening. If you think back to the Holocaust and what Jews (and the rest of the world) learned from it, this is a serious situation.
If those who believe in Christianity (or any other religion) need this kind of response to justify their unfortunate view of life, then more people than atheists should take notice and be ready to defend themselves.
- And They’ll Know We Are Christians by Our Love (tuibguy.com)
- Fox News Facebook Page Full of Death Threats Against Atheists (atheistrev.com)
- Jon Stewart crucifies American Atheists; re: 9/11 cross Continue reading on Examiner.com Jon Stewart crucifies American Atheists; re: 9/11 cross – National Humanist | Examiner.com http://www.examiner.com/humanist-in-national/jon-stewart-crucifies-america (smokesomething.wordpress.com)
- You Gotta Admire That ‘Christian Love!’ (arizonaatheist.blogspot.com)
- Fox News Facebook Page Gets 8,000 Death Threats (allfacebook.com)
- 9/11 Cross Controversy (dangeroustalk.net)
- Stephen Hawking on Discovery: No Need For A Creator To Explain The Universe (techie-buzz.com)
- Stephen Hawking explains the universe (scienceblogs.com)
- Hawking is an atheist (whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com)
Many years ago I wrote, while living in Marlborough, CT, of the loss of Jim Hobin, my son Buddy’s basketball coach. Jim usually worked out of our little central Connecticut town, but on that day he had left early in the morning to get to the main office of the company he worked for in New York. In the World Trade Center.
It was a loss that everyone in Marlborough felt… this was a town united by the sporting programs for its children, by congregation for morning coffee in the bakery, by well attended selectmen’s meetings. 9/11 would always mean Jim Hobin’s death to us.
- ‘This is a time to remember all those murdered by bin Laden’: Cameron pays tribute to victims of executed Al Qaeda kingpin (dailymail.co.uk)
- Osama Bin Laden Is Dead, United States Has Body (time.com)