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September 9th, 2013
03:29 PM ET

Fox News host: Atheists 'don't have to live here'

By Daniel BurkeCNN Belief Blog Co-Editor
[twitter-follow screen_name='BurkeCNN']

(CNN) - Fox News pundit Dana Perino said she's "tired" of atheists attempting to remove the phrase "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance, adding, "if these people really don't like it, they don't have to live here."

The co-host of Fox's "The Five" was referring to a suit brought by the American Humanist Association in Massachusetts, where the state's Supreme Judicial Court heard a challenge to the pledge on Wednesday.

The group's executive director, Roy Speckhardt, called the suit "the first challenge of its kind," but Perino begged to differ.

Perino, who was White House press secretary for George W. Bush from 2007-2009, said she recalled working at the Justice Department in 2001 "and a lawsuit like this came through."

The former Bush spokeswoman added that "before the day had finished the United States Senate and the House of Representatives had both passed resolutions saying that they were for keeping ‘under God’ in the pledge."

"If these people don't like it, they don't have to live here," Perino added.

David Silverman, president of the American Atheists, called Perino's comments "bigotry."

"I, for one, am tired of those Christians, like Ms. Perino, who think that equality is somehow un-American," Silverman said. "If Ms. Perino doesn't like being only equal, it is she who will have to leave America to some other country that doesn't value religious liberty."

READ MORE: Famous Atheists and Their Beliefs 

In 2002, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals sided with atheist Michael Newdow who argued that the words "under God" in the pledge amounted to an unconstitutional government endorsement of religion. The Supreme Court overturned that ruling.

Congress added the words "under God" in 1954 amid the red scare over the Soviet Union. In November 2002, after the Newdow ruling, Congress passed a law reaffirming "under God" in the pledge.

Greg Gutfeld, another co-host on "The Five," continued the discussion after Perino, saying the Pledge of Allegiance "is not a prayer, it's a patriotic exercise. In a sense, it's basically saying: Thanks for giving us the freedom to be an atheist."

The Massachusetts case, which was brought by an unidentified family of a student at a school in suburban Boston, will be argued on the premise that the pledge violates the Equal Rights Amendment of the Massachusetts Constitution.

READ MORE: Behold, the Six Types of Atheists

It is the first such case to be tried on the state level: All previous attempts have been argued in federal court on the grounds that "under God" was an unconstitutional violation of the separation of church and state.

CNN's Kevin Conlon contributed to this report.

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Church and state • Courts • Culture wars • News media • Schools • TV

soundoff (7,255 Responses)
  1. forgetaboutatleast

    god really does exist. i learned this from a movie called 'stargate' in the 90s.

    September 10, 2013 at 1:38 am |
  2. Haha

    Massachusets is our stupidest and least freedom loving state. They are more backwards than Alabama and have stupider accents. And the worst part about it is they try to disguise it all in liber-tea arguments. This situation is no different, these people don't want "In God we trust" off the money, they want it to say "There is no God."

    September 10, 2013 at 1:37 am |
  3. Kevin

    A belief in God, or some higher power, is an intellectually honest position. Science and such beliefs are completely compatible. There is an entire subject of research on how they fit well together.

    The problem is the extremists: one, evolution deniers and two, those that say science explains everything, when it doesn't. They also forget the most basic rule of science: every effect has a cause. But when it came to the most important question: formation of the universe, they just say it happened and always was and in no way did a higher power have anything to do with it. That is, religious haters get very "unscientific" when it comes to that part of the story.

    September 10, 2013 at 1:37 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      Nobody with a brain says science knows everything, they say everything is potentially discoverable in science. Also, the most intellectually dishonest position one can hold is to apply the cause and effect theory to the universe but not apply it to any perceived creator of the universe.

      September 10, 2013 at 1:41 am |
      • Kevin

        Right, but so many don't apply cause/effect to formation of the universe, because that's where it gets a little scary. A supernatural force, is just that supernatural – meaning we don't know what laws apply to it or not. So it's not intellectually dishonest to expect science cause/effect to apply to material formation of the formation, but some other explanation for creation of a supernatural being.

        I just get annoyed that the same people who claim to be so enlightened and deny the possibility of God (to the extent that it's a mockable belief) are so often the laziest people when it comes to researching/questioning. They just say nobody's shown me proof of God yet. They get really lazy on quite possibly the most important question of their lives.

        September 10, 2013 at 2:01 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          I don't know is the most intellectually honest answer regarding the formation of the universe. Attributing it to supernatural causes is a cop-out and EXTREMELY lazy. If I say that they universe was formed by an interdimensional travelling, crime fighting chipmunk named Septo from Planet Freakout, should you give it any credence?

          September 10, 2013 at 2:06 am |
    • tallulah13

      You are certainly welcome to your opinion, Kevin, but when you say "science doesn't explain everything", you forgot one important word: "yet". The search for answers has not stopped.

      You have simply decided that "god did it" is enough answer for you. For people who are interested in the truth, "god did it" is not an answer at all.

      September 10, 2013 at 1:42 am |
      • Kevin

        Perfectly intellectually viable to believe that a higher power (possibly beyond our comprehension) contributed to creating the universe. To not factor that possibility in would be quite unscientific Therefore, people that mock a belief in God are mocking possibilities within science.

        Look, you're NEVER going to get concrete proof of God the way you think of it, even if there is a God. It would destroy God because we would invariably become slaves to God. Who would NOT believe? Who would ever be free? I just feel that people who disbelieve because it hasn't "God Proven!" hasn't popped up yet on their phone (and there are many) are wasting a chance to dig deeper and question more about matching our world with some type of purpose beyond themselves.

        September 10, 2013 at 1:53 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Again, it's intellectually dishonest to apply cause and effect to the origins of the universe but not to the alleged creator.

          September 10, 2013 at 1:58 am |
        • tallulah13

          It would be viable if there were a shed of evidence to indicate the participation of a god. But there isn't. "We don't know" is not a case for god.

          You are no different than the ancient Greek who saw lightning and created a god called Zeus to explain it.

          September 10, 2013 at 2:00 am |
        • Kevin

          Again, I don't claim to posit that scientific laws do or do not apply to supernatural beings. I do know that we live in a natural world where science does apply. There is a profoundness to what we likely can't comprehend and it's fair to say that it may extend beyond science and the natural world.

          September 10, 2013 at 2:04 am |
        • Kevin

          Maybe not. But you are comparing apples to oranges (which is an easy mistake for those that still use the God-white beard mentality, which is made further obvious by your Zeus reference). We can trace Zeus' origin down to stories told by the ancients. I've identified a possibility of God (see above). That opening, made philosophically and maybe ethically, is what I'm concerned with.

          September 10, 2013 at 2:08 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          All stories of gods can be traced throughout history. The origins of the Abrahamic god are fairly conclusive, although it gets hazy whether he existed (not literally, of course) prior to the Canaanite pantheon.

          September 10, 2013 at 2:12 am |
        • tallulah13

          Kevin, there is no difference from one god to the next. Your god is no more valid than Zeus. Gods are man's attempt to put a familiar face on, and appeal to the unknown. There is no evidence that a supernatural being was ever required for the universe to be created. Indeed, as others have said, it only begs the question "who created the creator".

          Certainly, it is possible that a god created the universe. It is equally possible that our universe was sprayed out of a can by a child in another universe. There is exactly the same amount of proof.

          You simply believe in a god because it is an easy answer, it is an answer that humanity has used for thousands and thousands of years, and because you are influenced by the culture in which you live. None of this is proof. Indeed, when you consider the history of humanity and it's beliefs, it becomes almost impossible to believe in the existence of gods.

          September 10, 2013 at 2:20 am |
        • Kevin

          Tallulah, you have a lot of reading to do.

          I'm saying possibility of God, you are immediately trying to name it/identify it/categorize it with Abrahamic religions. Common mistake. The question of who created the creator, if anything, is different than what created the material world (where scientific laws must apply). Who created the creator could involve supernatural questions.

          Zeus can be traced to ancient Greece. Not being argumentative, just proving they are different.

          I think with a good amount of research, you will free yourself of these tell-tale signs that bind your thinking to immediately identifying a belief in a supernatural creator/force with a belief in a named deity.

          Just as you think believers cloak themselves in belief to isolate themselves from harsh reality, you also do the same by cloaking yourself in pseudo-intellectual arguments that do nothing to account for possibilities of things you cannot understand, and frankly go against the very science upon which you rely. Yes, there probably isn't "a Mayan rain god" as we think of it as we can trace when that belief originated (without substantiation, I don't think). That likelihood doesn't necessarily mean that there probably isn't a supernatural force/creator.

          September 10, 2013 at 2:38 am |
    • Observer

      Kevin,

      Even if a "higher power" created the universe, that still doesn't prove that the God in the Bible did it. It could have been done by Zeus or a committee of zombies or the Three Stooges. There is no proof for God or any of them doing it.

      September 10, 2013 at 1:52 am |
      • Kevin

        Right, so it's up to us to more than "observe". We have to think, socialize, maybe meditate...ok and observe our surroundings that can reveal a higher meaning to us. I think this is found most easily in nature and human compassion. Not saying it happens the same way, or the same religion (even if it's religion at all) for everyone.

        People want proof of God in the same way we get the news. Well, it's not going to happen. And not because there is no God. But because if you did get proof of God in the way you think of it (i.e., seeing God in the sky), then you would be forced to believe. I don't "know" if there's a God, but based on my using my faculties (brain and heart) I feel strongly that there is something beyond the material world.

        September 10, 2013 at 2:17 am |
        • skytag

          "And not because there is no God."

          Sorry, but this is by far the simplest and most reasonable explanation for not only the lack of proof, but many, many other questions as well.

          September 10, 2013 at 5:07 am |
    • skytag

      "those that say science explains everything"

      No such people exist. If you're argument is based on this you have no argument.

      September 10, 2013 at 5:03 am |
      • Kevin

        Of course there are. People who don't believe in anything supernatural believe that science explains everything. There is much about science that we don't know. But those people will maintain that science, known or unknown to us, explains everything.

        September 10, 2013 at 11:34 am |
        • G to the T

          Perhaps, but saying we don't know (yet), seems a more honest option than jumping to 'god did it' with no way to approach proving the contention.

          September 10, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
  4. Haha

    Massachusets is our stupidest and least freedom loving state. They are more backwards than Alabama and have stupider accents. And the worst part about it is they try to disguise it all in liber-tea arguments. This situation is no different, these people don't want "In God we trust" off the money, they want it to say "There is no God." The worst part though is that these were the same people that were trying to RUN the church 5 years ago before this got popular, and they have never beleived in anything but their own way,

    September 10, 2013 at 1:35 am |
  5. AtheistsLLLosers

    My name is AthiestsLLosers and I just want to kneel down, open up my mouth, and please Jesus!

    September 10, 2013 at 1:35 am |
  6. AtheistsLLosers

    Sometimes, when I look at the bible, I fantasize about the lord. All naked and hard on that cross. Sometimes, I dream about inserted the wooden cross into his be hind. Then I reach around and imagine pleasing him and his father at the same time with the holy spirit being blown on my face at the end. I wish he would give me a reach around while I grasp his thing with my lips. But he's so forceful, he makes me drop potty mess and blood then we play in the mess of our combined blood and potty mess. It's like 3 dudes one cup. Me, the lord, and his father. Then the spirit comes inside my bloody rear end. Oh yeah. I love what happens in heaven!

    September 10, 2013 at 1:29 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uU1taFr17QU

      September 10, 2013 at 1:33 am |
  7. the five-four morons and an idiot

    how can anyone take seriously what any fool on tv talk show said? talking airbags meant to stir controversy.

    September 10, 2013 at 1:22 am |
  8. OrionStyles

    The USA is a secular nation which has some religious judges fighting to keep the country non-secular.

    It is ridiculous to think that the words "under god" are at all secular when they are a part of an official pledge to instill nationalism in citizens.

    September 10, 2013 at 1:17 am |
  9. Bootyfunk

    christians don't have to live here.

    September 10, 2013 at 1:11 am |
    • Kevin

      Now you are no better than Dana Perino. Nice work.

      September 10, 2013 at 1:41 am |
  10. CBP

    Perhaps Ms. Perino is not aware that the phrase "Under God" was no in the original Pledge of Allegiance. It was added in the 1950's. Many of us spent years Pledging Allegiance without the phrase and never thought it should be included. It does not have anything to do with religion but is just the idea that religion is not part of our government. We do not state that any particular religion is the country's religion so whose God do we refer to in the Pledge.

    September 10, 2013 at 12:49 am |
    • Tim

      Shhhhhh....religious nuts are bothered by facts.

      September 10, 2013 at 1:02 am |
    • tallulah13

      I doubt she's aware. Fox doesn't hire people who want to know the truth. They hire people who want to invent the truth.

      September 10, 2013 at 1:24 am |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

        I'm convinced that everybody at Fox is in on the joke.

        September 10, 2013 at 1:30 am |
  11. albie

    "don't have to live here" is not how this country works - if you don't like something or, correctly in this case, take issue with religion inserting itself into government, YOU CHANGE IT – that is one of the things that makes this country strong. I am sick and tired or Christians trying to ram their belief system down the rest of the worlds throats. This is not a christian country, we are just unfortunate enough to be saddled with a bunch of em.

    September 10, 2013 at 12:48 am |
    • Chad

      HEAR HEAR!!!!!

      September 10, 2013 at 12:50 am |
  12. mike hunt

    lets see so far for hundreds of years the righteous and believers have run the show leading to war, death, bigotry,gay bashing treating women like objects. after all this and all the hypocrisy. all religions have failed and decimated the lands. ITS TIME FOR A CHANGE> there is and never was a god. so get over your need for fairy tales and make believe our planet is dying and we are the cause, wake up no one is gonna save us time to take responsibility

    September 10, 2013 at 12:38 am |
  13. rational thinking

    I had an interesting conversation with two ladies from church ,every time they come to the door i make sure i tell them i don't believe in God so that it gets the conversation started. Here are few lines of how the conversation went(Just for the record it was a very warm conversation and both parties (to say the truth its just them) hopefully walked out of the conversation with some food for their thought ::

    The Lady:: How do you think that we are so special? I mean we happen to have
    beaten all the odds and survived?

    Me:: In physics we have this idea that Everything than can happen Will Happen, given a long enough time...

    The Lady then goes:: But everything you learned comes from the understanding of other men. How can they comprehend the grandeur of the creator himself?

    Then I go:: So that also implies that everything we know about God himself also was passed down from our ancestors too. So this leaves room for possibility that it could be Men Created God rather God Creating Men.

    September 10, 2013 at 12:36 am |
  14. Josh

    Annnnnnnnnnnnnd let the Atheist, (most likely Anti-Theist) Fox News hating, CNN/MSNBC liberal fanboy raging begin....

    Tooth Fairy... blah blah blah, more intellectually enlightened... yada yada, world would be better without... so on and so on... We all get it, you think you're better than everyone else who believes in God. Can we move on already?

    Moderate atheists and moderate religious are the only hope for the future. Radical atheism is just as bad as radical religion because they both believe in oppression of the other (all the while denying that it is oppression). Everyone just get over yourselves and lets stop the childish superiority complexes already.

    September 10, 2013 at 12:35 am |
    • Athy

      Nah. Where would our fun come from then? Beating up on religies is like shooting ducks in a barrel.

      September 10, 2013 at 12:38 am |
      • Josh

        Maybe Golf? Paintball is fun too.

        September 10, 2013 at 1:54 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      I fail to see how supporting church/state separation could be deemed to be radical atheism.

      PS, what does atheism have to do with liberalism?

      September 10, 2013 at 12:50 am |
      • Josh

        So I wrote a comment... But apparently it got lost so I'm sorry for that. I won't be attempting to type the whole thing out again but the main points were this.

        Separation of Church and State doesn't mean that religion is not allowed in the government, it just means that it should not be REQUIRED to be in the government. Otherwise every politician would be contractually obligated to be an Atheist and renounce any belief in God, no politician would be allowed to say "God bless the United States" at the end of a speech, so for and etc. Get my drift? The government is not allowed to make a mandate of religion (and likewise, against religion. It is a two-sided coin) but it is not required to exterminate religion from it's ranks. That would be oppression. The Pledge is why this is all coming out. "Saying Under God is religious oppression". It is not because saying the Pledge is a choice, not an obligation. That is why the Supreme Court shot this down when it was brought to them in the first place. You are confusing Separation of Church and State with "Extermination of the Church within the State". That is what Radicalism in this instance is.

        September 10, 2013 at 1:50 am |
        • tallulah13

          Bummer for you Josh. Our founding fathers thought otherwise, and codified the separation of church and state into our nation's Constitution.

          September 10, 2013 at 1:53 am |
        • Josh

          They did indeed and I fully acknowledge that they did. However, I didn't see any counter to my point if that was what you were disagreeing with. If you think I'm wrong in my assessment then tell me how and I'd love to see what your perspective is on it.

          September 10, 2013 at 1:57 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          You've confused secularism with state atheism so your argument is void.

          September 10, 2013 at 2:09 am |
        • tallulah13

          "Separation of Church and State doesn't mean that religion is not allowed in the government, it just means that it should not be REQUIRED to be in the government. "

          This, right here, is where you got it wrong. Religion is separate from government. It is protected, but separate, because our founding fathers made it so.

          "The purpose of separation of church and state is to keep forever from these shores the ceaseless strife that has soaked the soil of Europe in blood for centuries." – James Madison, 1803 letter objecting use of gov. land for churches

          ". . . Thirteen governments [of the original states] thus founded on the natural authority of the people alone, without a pretence of miracle or mystery, and which are destined to spread over the northern part of that whole quarter of the globe, are a great point gained in favor of the rights of mankind." - John Adams

          "History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government. This marks the lowest grade of ignorance, of which their political as well as religious leaders will always avail themselves for their own purpose." – Thomas Jefferson to Baron von Humboldt, 1813

          It's late here, and I have to get to bed. But please consider what the men who created this nation have to say about the separation of church and state. I trust their interpretation over yours, any day.

          September 10, 2013 at 2:10 am |
        • Josh

          Dave- So what is the difference? One actively oppresses religion, the other actively doesn't allow the mention of it or practice. Splitting hairs?

          Tall- Many of the Founding Fathers were deists. You're not going to hear me claim they were Christians but those quotes really say nothing in regards to what I said. The FFs were opposed to a Theocratical State, such as those in Europe at the time where they were entirely controlled by the Catholic Church or royalty "appointed" by it, but they were also opposed to an anti-theist state. That is why they protected religious freedom, even in the case of politicians. The only way to keep religion out of politics, or the State, would be to enforce a mandatory atheism which would be religious oppression. Otherwise, again, politicians would not be allowed to pray in a public place (or even in private since they are a member of "the State"), wear a cross, say "God Bless America", etc. Separation of Church and State protects citizens from the requirement of religion, not exposure to it.

          September 10, 2013 at 2:38 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          I'm sorry, but your understanding of secularism is incredibly flawed.

          September 10, 2013 at 2:41 am |
      • brian

        separation of church and state was an idea that came from conservative religious groups ( anabaptists and the like ) which fled the Church of England, Lutherans and Catholics who controlled the government in Europe. Separation is not an atheist idea, really it's an idea to allow everyone to follow whatever fool idea they want.

        September 10, 2013 at 3:00 am |
    • albie

      Its not oppression, that is what Christians do if given the leash

      September 10, 2013 at 12:50 am |
      • Josh

        Oppression is what anyone in power does when given a leash. That goes for Atheists too. No one is immune to it.

        September 10, 2013 at 1:51 am |
    • Bootyfunk

      Josh said:
      ". Radical atheism is just as bad as radical religion because they both believe in oppression of the other (all the while denying that it is oppression). "

      this is the same song religious people cry whenever an atheist disagrees with them, points out the silliness or cruelty in their beliefs, the errors in their holy book. boohoo. there are a few truly radical atheists that think religion should be done away with, but that's not what you're talking about here, is it? any atheist that criticizes religion is a terrible person, right? well, have to respect you, but we don't have to respect your lunatic ideas - that's the beauty of this country. if you have a nutjob idea or follow an invisible sky fairy, we can call you on it. dry all you want, but don't tell us we don't have a right to voice our opinions.

      September 10, 2013 at 1:16 am |
      • Josh

        All I saw in your comment was more of the same old dried up insults that Atheists love to throw out there (As I preemptively pointed out in my original comment). I get it, you think you're better than me. But does insulting that religious person you disagree with, talking about how terrible, stupid, and insufferable they are all the while saying that you, as an atheist, are really the accepting, freedom loving, and tolerate really make you so? I don't think it does. I think it makes you just as bad as those "Religious Lunatics" you claim to hate and be better than. Just food for thought. If you were attempting to take the high road in your comment I think the sign was switched around when you took the exit.

        September 10, 2013 at 1:36 am |
    • Cord

      Finally, a voice of reason. Thank you.

      September 10, 2013 at 1:28 am |
  15. Frank Mondana

    I think this guy has it backwards. He is the one who wants a Christian Theocracy where everyone believes in the Christian (although he may put up with the Jewish) God. In other words he believes in the Freedom to be Christian (and to a lessor degree, Jewish).
    Like so many believers he forgets that we are all given the freedom to worship, or not, whatever deity or deities we want. The most important part of this idea is that the government cannot decide what is a faith or how to worship.
    In another bit of tunnel vision unique to zealots is that he singled out Atheists. What about Buddhists, Wiccans, and the other religions that don't recognize a single "god"?

    The funniest thing about the Extreme Right is listening to them rant against Sharia and other theocracies, then turn around and say that atheists are wrong and have to practice Christianity because that's what our country was founded on.

    On the flip side of this is what I call "Evangelical Atheists" who pour millions of dollars and resources in removing the word "god" from our money and public buildings. People like Dawkins are no better than the kooks on the Right.
    I am an Atheist as my family has been for generations. I have no problem with religion and believers (provided they use some critical thinking). I only draw the line when I am told to recite a pledge that expresses a belief in a god that does not exist or am told that I have to do anything that makes me out to be a believer in any supernatural force.
    Do I like that the word "god" is on our money? Nope, but as long as I don't have to genuflect before handing over a $20 bill to pay for my smokes and Hustler then I don't care what it says.

    One last thing. Atheists are not all unhappy and morose killjoys just waiting to end our useless lives that all began due to an accident. Most of those I've met that fit that description are conservative religious types. I am actually quite happy. I try to be the best person I can be. I am an astrophysicist who marvels at the natural processes that made everything we see. I marvel when looking at a star and understand most of the processes that make it burn. I love the fact that we have learned almost everything we know about stars by simply studying their light as it passes through a prism.
    Most of all I love the fact that I can study the stars without fear of being stoned or hanged. I have no fear of being whipped because I believe in the Big Bang. I love the fact that within a 1/2 mile radius of my house there are churches, temples, a Masonic Lodge, and other structures representing many faiths and beliefs and I have never seen or heard an explosion, gunshots, or mass murder caused by intolerant asses who feel the have the right to tell others what they can believe.

    September 10, 2013 at 12:15 am |
    • Athy

      Frank, Dana Perino is a woman.

      September 10, 2013 at 12:30 am |
  16. gopersareignorant

    It's great to see how all of you self righteous christian aššholes love thy neighbor.

    September 10, 2013 at 12:09 am |
  17. Fritz Hohenheim

    Well, I for once refuse to recite the pledge anywhere it is mandatory like community meetings. They want me to declare that I am "under god", but we have the right to refuse that. Just dont say the pledge.

    September 10, 2013 at 12:05 am |
    • tallulah13

      I confess I've always found the whole thing rather silly. I love my country and will defend it if needed. But the flag is just a symbol of that country. It's rather like marrying the shirt of the person you love.

      September 10, 2013 at 1:45 am |
  18. Mack

    If there is a pie chart representing the %'s of why Theists believe in a God, what % is this slice of the pie: "Because I was raised that way, that's what you're supposed to do, and now I have a family and it would be very difficult to explain a reverse-course at this point"? You think 10%, 20%, 30%? It's a big number whatever it is. Get real and get honest. Break the mold for, uh, Christ's sake. Deep down you know it's phony.

    September 10, 2013 at 12:02 am |
    • Cord

      I will respectfully disagree. Deep down, I know that there is a God.
      I'm not trying to mock or start an argument. Just saying what I truly believe. Sorry that you feel that all Christians are somehow "phony."

      September 10, 2013 at 1:38 am |
      • tallulah13

        I believe that the true believers of every one of thousands of gods ever worshiped by humanity honestly believed that their god was real. The conviction of those who worshiped Odin or Isis was no different than the conviction of those who worship the christian god today.

        September 10, 2013 at 1:50 am |
      • LeRoy_Was_Here

        There is an important difference between 'belief' and 'knowledge'. Deep down, you BELIEVE in God. You do not KNOW there is a God. See the difference?

        September 10, 2013 at 10:58 am |
    • Kevin

      Yeah, I believe too. The problem is people like Mack have the "old guy with a white beard" out dated mindset of God or a higher power. I came to my belief from philosophical thinking. Mack would be surprised how important and common it is to question God rather than just rely on what parents did (which many rebel against anyway).

      September 10, 2013 at 1:48 am |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

        If one follows Abrahamic doctrine, that's how one is supposed to view Yahweh. Also, he's right. Most people are religious out of tradition and/or convenience. If 75-80% of the population are Christian, how many of that 75% are devout believers with a deep understanding and knowledge of scripture? I'd say less than 1%.

        September 10, 2013 at 1:53 am |
        • Kevin

          Yeah, I had a Catholic upbringing where scripture was not emphasized as much as critical thinking. Your numbers are a little skewed. The Bible was written by men and not every bit is to be taken literally. Most people are religious because it makes them happy.

          September 10, 2013 at 2:47 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Why isn't it supposed to be taken literally? Who's the arbiter of what's to be taken literal and what isn't?

          September 10, 2013 at 2:49 am |
        • brian

          It can't be taken literally because it contradicts itself in very obvious ways, just compare multiple gospels and note how they disagree when they describe the exact same events. There is a reason the reformation happened when the people were able to read the book themselves.

          It is a flawed view which takes the scientific method and sees a bible written before the age of reason as if it should be read as a the only textbook you need for both nature and history. A figure of speech like the four corners of the world becomes irrefutable proof that God claims the world is flat. Even if you tried to follow the Torah and the 10 commandments, life itself will reveal contradictions where you must choose between two laws – ( do i lie to hide these jews from being killed )

          A jewish rabbi was asked by a man to teach him the entire Torah while he stood on one foot, he simply replied "What is hateful to you, do not do to your neighbor: that is the whole Torah while the rest is commentary; go and learn it."

          September 10, 2013 at 3:29 am |
  19. gar

    If Dana Perino doesn't like it here, she can move to Iran and live in a theocracy.

    September 9, 2013 at 11:59 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.