Holiness has a mighty influence upon others. When this appears with power in the lives of Christians, it works mightily upon the spirits of men; it stops the mouths of the ungodly . . . . I am sure we have found, by woeful experience, that in these debauched times, when religion is so bespattered with frequent scandals, yes, a general looseness of professors, it is hard to get any to come into the net of the Gospel. . . . If they were but holy and exemplary, they would be as a repetition of the preacher’s sermon to the families and neighbors among whom they converse, and would keep the sound of his doctrine continually ringing in their ears.
– William Gurnall
1617 – 1679
Now, I know that not all atheists are angry and walk around with a chip on their shoulder (some are actually pleasant to be around), but here is a classic example of why atheists have still not found broad acceptance among the populace.
Below are some morsels from a FoxNews article (found here) about what has anti-theists in a tizzy . . . this week:
A group of New York City atheists is demanding that the city remove a street sign honoring seven firefighters killed in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks because they say the sign violates the separation of church and state.
The street, “Seven in Heaven Way,” was officially dedicated last weekend in Brooklyn outside the firehouse where the firefighters once served. The ceremony was attended by dozens of firefighters, city leaders and widows of the fallen men.
“There should be no signage or displays of religious nature in the public domain,” said Ken Bronstein, president of New York City Atheists. “It’s really insulting to us.”
Never mind that your words and actions are insulting to everyone else.
Bronstein then shares this revelation:
“We’ve concluded as atheists there is no heaven and there’s no hell.”
Then Bronstein shows his sensitivity regarding the matter:
He was nonplussed over how his opposition to the street sign might be perceived – especially since the sign is honoring fallen heroes. “It’s irrelevant who it’s for,” Bronstein said. “We think this is a very bad thing.”
Of course we’ll never be told how it’s “a very bad thing.”
Then the president of the American Atheists makes this statement:
David Silverman, president of American Atheists, agreed calling on the city to remove the sign. “It implies that heaven actually exists,” Silverman told Fox News Radio.
See, in Silverman’s world it’s ok to claim Heaven doesn’t exist but don’t you dare suggest otherwise.
“People died in 9/11, but they were all people who died, not just Christians. Heaven is a specifically Christian place. For the city to come up and say all those heroes are in heaven now, it’s not appropriate.”
I agree with this last sentence from Silverman, but for different reasons.
Now it’s time to muddy the waters:
“All memorials for fallen heroes should celebrate the diversity of our country and should be secular in nature. These heroes might have been Jews, they might have been atheists, I don’t know, but either way it’s wrong for the city to say they’re in heaven. It’s preachy.”
Don’t you think it would be important to find out if one of the seven firefighters was an atheist before taking up this cause? Not knowing reveals that you are driven by your agenda and facts don’t really matter.
Perhaps the seven firefighters comprised several beliefs. Maybe one was a Christian, one a Jew, one a Roman Catholic, one a Muslim, one a Mormon, one a Jehovah’s Witness, and one a Seventh-day Adventist. All of these believe in a Heaven. So if none of the seven were an atheist, then this whole argument is moot.
And believing the seven firefighters are in Heaven is “preachy” but declaring that there is no Heaven is not?
Also, how does one “celebrate the diversity of our country” and at the same same time “be secular in nature?” That’s called doublespeak.
And then there’s this interesting fact:
City leaders seemed dumbfounded by the atheists’ outrage because no one complained about the sign as it was going through a public approval process. “It’s unfortunate that they didn’t raise this as an issue while it was undergoing its public review either at the community board level or when it came before the City Council on their public agenda,” said Craig Hammerman, the district manager for Brooklyn Community Board 6.
Hammerman told Fox News Radio that the community was “solidly behind this proposal. Not a single person stood up to speak out against it. I think it’s a little late in the process for someone to be bringing this up now.”
That’s because they wanted the sign to be approved so they could protest it on a grander scale and get the publicity they so desperately seek. There would have been much less press if they protested the matter during the city council meetings.
“The patriotic and right thing to do is to obey our own law and to realize that we are a diverse nation, a melting pot full of different views,” Silverman added.
We’re a melting pot but don’t you dare reflect the religious part of that melting pot, because if the majority of religious views conflict with the minority of anti-religious views, by golly, it’s time to knock the pot over. So much for diversity, huh?
But the city has no intention of removing the sign. If that’s the case, Bronstein said he may consider a lawsuit.
Good for the city! What’s one more threat of a lawsuit? Muslims use threats of terrorism, anti-theists use threats of litigation. They’re both designed to cause terror in an attempt to destroy an enemy. I hope NYC stands up to these anti-theist threats as they do to the Islamic threats.
Bottom line, is it’s just a street sign. It’s not going to cause anyone to become a Christian nor is it going to alter the course our nation is currently on. In the grand scheme of things this sign is much to do about nothing and the anti-theists know it. They’re just using it to reach for another 15 minutes of fame.
The families of those seven firefighters are ok with the memorial, as well as the overwhelming majority of the city; the only ones with objections are a small band of anti-theists who seem to exist only to be a nuisance to others.
I’m still waiting for these atheists to muster up the courage to cackle and threaten lawsuits over the Islamic festival held every year in Dearborn, Michigan.
While I’m waiting, I think I’ll protest the signs in my city that are “anti-Christian.” Signs like First Street, Thurston Way, and Riverview Lane.