Saturday, 7 January 2012

An Atheist Against Religious Intolerance

Sent to The Star, Johannesburg Sat 07/01/2012 21:13, not published, and Sun 08/01/2012 17:55 to The Times, Johannesburg (who published most of it the next day).

As an atheist, I would like to record my strongest condemnation of the Christmas bombings of churches in Nigeria, now followed by a fatal attack on a northern Nigerian church.

While I don't think religion is a good idea, I –alongside most atheists– believe in religious freedom: People have the right to practice whatever creed they wish, as long as they obey reasonable laws (including that they don't coerce others).

Religion should be allowed to wither and die under the spotlight of reason and science: Never by intimidation.

The use of force by people like Boko Haram who believe their religion supports violence, should be opposed by all decent atheists, Buddhists, Christians, Hindus, Jews, Muslims, and even followers of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

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