Atheists enjoy the same relative quality of life as Christians.
It's a tired assumption in our culture that Christain's are happier, more moral, enjoy more successful marriages etc but I disagree. I'm also considering employment, the built environment, physical/mental health, education, recreation, leisure time, and social belonging to be important indicators of quality of life . I want to limit discussions on morality to actions that cause clear harm and exclude sexual immorality since we will likely disagree on this issue and I don't want to get side tracked, infidelity is still fair. I'd prefer a Christian opponent and have limited who can accept. PM me if you're interested.
I don’t want this debate to sound negative towards Christians and I have rephrased a lot of the data positively focusing on the high quality of life Atheists can acheive. Unbelievers are often high achieving trustworthy people and yet we are one of the least trusted groups in America. I am by no means a strong anti-theist but if there was less ignorance on some of this information people wouldn’t say atheism like a dirty word. Secular world views such as humanism would not be denegrated so much and could work with religious groups to improve.
You’ve presented one possible negative nihlistic world view. There are obviously other world views that an atheist can adopt and this topic really addresses how disbelief in a God effects other areas of life.
We are machines that propogate DNA but that says nothing about what is actually important to us. I have a purpose too and a whole list of things that I value and goals that I persue. You probably have a similar list of values and goals that provide purpose that have nothing to do with God.
Yes, according to Christianity many decent people like me will be punished… forever. Understanding that I have only one life to live makes it that much more valuable and I am more likely not to take it for granted and be proactive. I can punch holes in the christian world view if you want to make this about which world view is better for the mind.
Atheists are equally moral
It’s difficult to claim that atheists are moral given the following facts. States in the US with lower levels of religiosity (we are roughly 80% Christian overall) also have lower levels of property crime  and teen pregnancy rates due to irresponsible sexual practices. Atheists are also less likely to rob a bank and commit murder or sexual assault and there is a lower percentage in prison than the general population.
A study comparing religiousity in developed democracies with societal health found a strong correlation between secularization and improved social health. The more secular these countries were the lower the homocide, teen pregnancy and abortion rates . Secular countries also tend to have lower contracted sexually transmitted diseases due to responsible sexual practices.
I’ll concede that there is mixed findings on religiousity and happiness in the US and when looking at religious countries in a vacuum. It looks like being an idealogical minority in your country may effect your happiness. Atheists in the bible belt may feel isolated and alienated from their peers. This is particularly true in the US where polls indicate we are among the most disliked and distrusted groups. The study indicated that in some areas we are distrusted as much as rapists which is an apalling example of groundless prejudice.
This is balanced by the fact that the worlds most secular countries are also the worlds happiest countries according to the 2010 Gallup data. Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands are the world’s happiest countries and are some of the least religious countries in the world. This is confirmed by the world database of happiness, an organization that compiles survey and research data on happiness in various countries. People who reject there religion report feeling happier and more liberated in there secular lives 
Atheists have successful marriages
In the US Atheists have lower divorce rates when compared with religious groups. While 27% of adult born again Christians and 29% of Baptists have had at least one divorce only 21% of atheists have had a divorce and they tie with catholics having the lowest rate . This is especially compelling considering that atheists have no outside reason to stay together and that Christians are commanded not to divorce in 1 Corinthians 7:12-13 and a few other scriptures.
Atheists are often high achieving
Surveys have shown that atheists are better educated and are in a higher income bracket when compared to believers . Atheists have better sex lives according surveys and psychological research and those who deconvert from religion report an improved sex life(remember this isn’t about sexual premiscuity, atheists also have a higher success rate in marriage as seen above). More secular prosperous countries tend to have better access to health care, job security and education. Atheists tend to score high on measures of intelligence especially verbal ability and scientific literacy  and even score better than believers on tests of religious knowledge .
Atheists maintain a high quality of life inspite of descrimination
It’s not great to be an ideological minority even when it’s possible to just smile and keep your mouth shut. When roughly 80% of North Americans identify as Christians it is easy to feel alienated. You can smile and nod as if you agree when religious talk comes up. It’s certainly not comforting to realize that others would likely think a lot less of you if they understood what you believed. It’s difficult not being open and honest for fear of retrobution.
Even though all data points to the fact that we are just as well adjusted as others, of survey respondents 76% said they would only vote for religious political candidates  and it’s generally considered political suicide to admit to disbelief . Five states still have religious tests for office and we did not have an openly nontheist member of congress until 2007. George H. W. Bush famously said that atheists should not be considered citizens or patriots.
When given the choice between other goups for a marriage partner atheist was always last on the list. Two surveys found that disapproval of atheists is higher than for other groups including homosexuals, mulims and african americans. Many respondents assumed that atheists were immoral and more likely to engage in criminal behavior even though the opposite is true.
Inspite of unwarrented prejudice atheists maintain a high quality of life making it even clearer that a belief in God is not necessary to live a quality life.
The research is very straight forward, not believing in God does not have a negative impact on your quality of life. Descrimination is the major detraction which has nothing to do with the disbelief itself. You opened with some intuitive arguments that the real statistics knocked flat. I may hit some other areas next round but I think there is enough information already to support my set up. Looking forward to your response.
tala00131 forfeited this round.
Hmmm, that's a shame. I may restart the debate and look for another opponent if the forfeits continue. Extend all of my arguments.
tala00131 forfeited this round.
With 20 debates I would have expexted a little more fight from you Tala. Extend all arguments.
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