Total Posts:14|Showing Posts:1-14
Jump to topic:

Does atheism imply bias?

Nebelous
Posts: 58
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/9/2014 10:39:11 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
I often see that when an organization has a majority percentage of atheists in their ranks they get labeled as being biased against religion. Would this be accurate?

Example: An organization get's polled on their beliefs and 93% say they don't believe in a god or have a religion. The remaining 7% are religious in some way.

Do you think the organization is biased? Would more information be needed to form a conclusion?
vbaculum
Posts: 1,274
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/9/2014 12:54:06 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 10:39:11 AM, Nebelous wrote:
I often see that when an organization has a majority percentage of atheists in their ranks they get labeled as being biased against religion. Would this be accurate?

Example: An organization get's polled on their beliefs and 93% say they don't believe in a god or have a religion. The remaining 7% are religious in some way.

Do you think the organization is biased? Would more information be needed to form a conclusion?

No it's not biased. Consider a geological organization which has a high-percentage of people who don't believe the world is flat. Or an astrological organization whose members don't believe that Kolob exist.
"If you claim to value nonviolence and you consume animal products, you need to rethink your position on nonviolence." - Gary Francione

THE WORLD IS VEGAN! If you want it
Nebelous
Posts: 58
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/9/2014 8:04:03 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 12:54:06 PM, vbaculum wrote:
No it's not biased. Consider a geological organization which has a high-percentage of people who don't believe the world is flat. Or an astrological organization whose members don't believe that Kolob exist.

Good point.

So if it's in accordance to what is considered or demonstrated to be true it isn't biased. What about things that cannot be demonstrated to be true? Are things considered true also true?
vbaculum
Posts: 1,274
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/9/2014 9:27:11 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 8:04:03 PM, Nebelous wrote:
At 3/9/2014 12:54:06 PM, vbaculum wrote:
No it's not biased. Consider a geological organization which has a high-percentage of people who don't believe the world is flat. Or an astrological organization whose members don't believe that Kolob exist.

Good point.

So if it's in accordance to what is considered or demonstrated to be true it isn't biased. What about things that cannot be demonstrated to be true? Are things considered true also true?

I would say that Kolob is an instance of something that cannot be demonstrated to be true of false. Check out Russell's teapot argument. {http://en.wikipedia.org...).

To not accept a fanciful argument such as an intelligent being created everything, or that a tea pot is orbiting Kolob as we speak, does not bias someone (or a group of people) against the truth. It simply suggest that they don't accept ideas that have no grounding.
"If you claim to value nonviolence and you consume animal products, you need to rethink your position on nonviolence." - Gary Francione

THE WORLD IS VEGAN! If you want it
Nebelous
Posts: 58
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/9/2014 9:49:52 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 9:27:11 PM, vbaculum wrote:

I would say that Kolob is an instance of something that cannot be demonstrated to be true of false. Check out Russell's teapot argument. {http://en.wikipedia.org...).

To not accept a fanciful argument such as an intelligent being created everything, or that a tea pot is orbiting Kolob as we speak, does not bias someone (or a group of people) against the truth. It simply suggest that they don't accept ideas that have no grounding.

So justification for the claim is needed. What if the justification is not valid? If I said a god doesn't exist because x, would the reason have to be justified to a certain degree? Like if I said god doesn't exist because there is evil, would I fall short of justification for my claim if I didn't have good reasons to back it up?

I think an atheist who was originally a Catholic, but had a traumatic experience that shook their faith, would have a bias against that denomination. How would you know that the members of the organization are atheist because of good reasons? Your responses do answer the question. No, atheism does not imply bias, but could atheists be biased?

What I'm getting at is that not all atheists are alike. Atheism is very broad, and doesn't really say much about the individual. If you say you're Baptists or even just Christian, people naturally know more about you than if you said you're deist or atheist.
Double_R
Posts: 4,886
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/9/2014 11:39:08 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 9:49:52 PM, Nebelous wrote:
At 3/9/2014 9:27:11 PM, vbaculum wrote:

I would say that Kolob is an instance of something that cannot be demonstrated to be true of false. Check out Russell's teapot argument. {http://en.wikipedia.org...).

To not accept a fanciful argument such as an intelligent being created everything, or that a tea pot is orbiting Kolob as we speak, does not bias someone (or a group of people) against the truth. It simply suggest that they don't accept ideas that have no grounding.

So justification for the claim is needed. What if the justification is not valid? If I said a god doesn't exist because x, would the reason have to be justified to a certain degree? Like if I said god doesn't exist because there is evil, would I fall short of justification for my claim if I didn't have good reasons to back it up?

No claim should ever be accepted until it has met it's burden of proof. That burden necessarily falls onto the person who makes the claim, and the standard of evidence required depends entirely on the claim. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. The claim that I went shopping yesterday in most cases requires nothing more then my say so. The claim that a man rose from the dead and walked on water requires significantly more.

I think an atheist who was originally a Catholic, but had a traumatic experience that shook their faith, would have a bias against that denomination. How would you know that the members of the organization are atheist because of good reasons? Your responses do answer the question. No, atheism does not imply bias, but could atheists be biased?

Of course atheists can be biased. They are people just like everyone else.

What I'm getting at is that not all atheists are alike. Atheism is very broad, and doesn't really say much about the individual. If you say you're Baptists or even just Christian, people naturally know more about you than if you said you're deist or atheist.

Atheism is not intended to say anything about an individual. It is simply a lack of belief in a particular claim, saying nothing about what the person does believe.
vbaculum
Posts: 1,274
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/10/2014 9:34:58 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 9:49:52 PM, Nebelous wrote:
At 3/9/2014 9:27:11 PM, vbaculum wrote:

I would say that Kolob is an instance of something that cannot be demonstrated to be true of false. Check out Russell's teapot argument. {http://en.wikipedia.org...).

To not accept a fanciful argument such as an intelligent being created everything, or that a tea pot is orbiting Kolob as we speak, does not bias someone (or a group of people) against the truth. It simply suggest that they don't accept ideas that have no grounding.

So justification for the claim is needed. What if the justification is not valid? If I said a god doesn't exist because x, would the reason have to be justified to a certain degree? Like if I said god doesn't exist because there is evil, would I fall short of justification for my claim if I didn't have good reasons to back it up?

I think an atheist who was originally a Catholic, but had a traumatic experience that shook their faith, would have a bias against that denomination. How would you know that the members of the organization are atheist because of good reasons? Your responses do answer the question. No, atheism does not imply bias, but could atheists be biased?

What I'm getting at is that not all atheists are alike. Atheism is very broad, and doesn't really say much about the individual. If you say you're Baptists or even just Christian, people naturally know more about you than if you said you're deist or atheist.

Yeah, I've known some people who say they don't believe in this or that religion because of how bad their lives were going at the time. When I think of a members of the National Academy of Sciences, whose membership is overwhelmingly atheist, these poor-weather atheists don't come to mind. When I think of an NAS atheists, I picture someone who has looked religious argument seriously and dispassionately and has concluded that religious claims are extremely unlikely. That, to me, suggests clear and careful thinking, not a bias against truth.
"If you claim to value nonviolence and you consume animal products, you need to rethink your position on nonviolence." - Gary Francione

THE WORLD IS VEGAN! If you want it
Nebelous
Posts: 58
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/10/2014 12:39:53 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 11:39:08 PM, Double_R wrote:
No claim should ever be accepted until it has met it's burden of proof. That burden necessarily falls onto the person who makes the claim, and the standard of evidence required depends entirely on the claim. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. The claim that I went shopping yesterday in most cases requires nothing more then my say so. The claim that a man rose from the dead and walked on water requires significantly more.


Very true.

Atheism is not intended to say anything about an individual. It is simply a lack of belief in a particular claim, saying nothing about what the person does believe.

Good point. But I think when an organization has a majority of say Christians, you can obviously know a lot more about them then an organization of atheists. I'm not talking specifically about a science based organization, maybe an atheist soup drive opens. People would naturally be curious about what their ideals are, or if they have collective ideas about certain things besides god(s).

If an atheist book club was in town, I would naturally assume we would read atheistic literature, likewise with a religious club. So would I be right to assume that they would have a bias toward religion or religious people? Maybe the work being done is what matters.
Double_R
Posts: 4,886
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/10/2014 12:52:12 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/10/2014 12:39:53 PM, Nebelous wrote:
At 3/9/2014 11:39:08 PM, Double_R wrote:
No claim should ever be accepted until it has met it's burden of proof. That burden necessarily falls onto the person who makes the claim, and the standard of evidence required depends entirely on the claim. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. The claim that I went shopping yesterday in most cases requires nothing more then my say so. The claim that a man rose from the dead and walked on water requires significantly more.


Very true.

Atheism is not intended to say anything about an individual. It is simply a lack of belief in a particular claim, saying nothing about what the person does believe.

Good point. But I think when an organization has a majority of say Christians, you can obviously know a lot more about them then an organization of atheists. I'm not talking specifically about a science based organization, maybe an atheist soup drive opens. People would naturally be curious about what their ideals are, or if they have collective ideas about certain things besides god(s).

If an atheist book club was in town, I would naturally assume we would read atheistic literature, likewise with a religious club. So would I be right to assume that they would have a bias toward religion or religious people? Maybe the work being done is what matters.

The only thing that bonds atheists together is a lack of belief in God, so if there were such a thing as an atheist book club then obviously the only thing they would write about is their lack of belief in God. Anything else would be completely off subject, kind of like a group of conservative republicans writing a book about their love of chocolate brownies.

You seem to be searching for some characterization atheistic beliefs when the very definition precludes that. If we were to call people who believe in unicorns "unicorists", then you would be an "aunicornist" (I am assuming). That would say nothing else about you no matter how hard someone tries to draw a link.
Nebelous
Posts: 58
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/10/2014 1:12:06 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/10/2014 12:52:12 PM, Double_R wrote:
At 3/10/2014 12:39:53 PM, Nebelous wrote:
At 3/9/2014 11:39:08 PM, Double_R wrote:
No claim should ever be accepted until it has met it's burden of proof. That burden necessarily falls onto the person who makes the claim, and the standard of evidence required depends entirely on the claim. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. The claim that I went shopping yesterday in most cases requires nothing more then my say so. The claim that a man rose from the dead and walked on water requires significantly more.


Very true.

Atheism is not intended to say anything about an individual. It is simply a lack of belief in a particular claim, saying nothing about what the person does believe.

Good point. But I think when an organization has a majority of say Christians, you can obviously know a lot more about them then an organization of atheists. I'm not talking specifically about a science based organization, maybe an atheist soup drive opens. People would naturally be curious about what their ideals are, or if they have collective ideas about certain things besides god(s).

If an atheist book club was in town, I would naturally assume we would read atheistic literature, likewise with a religious club. So would I be right to assume that they would have a bias toward religion or religious people? Maybe the work being done is what matters.

The only thing that bonds atheists together is a lack of belief in God, so if there were such a thing as an atheist book club then obviously the only thing they would write about is their lack of belief in God. Anything else would be completely off subject, kind of like a group of conservative republicans writing a book about their love of chocolate brownies.


But what about just an organization, not devoted to atheistic pursuits, that has a majority of atheists? Like the book club, just without the name. 80% atheist, 20% other. Would they not have a bias against religious literature?

You seem to be searching for some characterization atheistic beliefs when the very definition precludes that. If we were to call people who believe in unicorns "unicorists", then you would be an "aunicornist" (I am assuming). That would say nothing else about you no matter how hard someone tries to draw a link.

I was hoping theists would respond, because I'm pretty much arguing against myself, but it's fun to play devil's advocate.
Double_R
Posts: 4,886
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/10/2014 1:34:43 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/10/2014 1:12:06 PM, Nebelous wrote:
At 3/10/2014 12:52:12 PM, Double_R wrote:
The only thing that bonds atheists together is a lack of belief in God, so if there were such a thing as an atheist book club then obviously the only thing they would write about is their lack of belief in God. Anything else would be completely off subject, kind of like a group of conservative republicans writing a book about their love of chocolate brownies.


But what about just an organization, not devoted to atheistic pursuits, that has a majority of atheists? Like the book club, just without the name. 80% atheist, 20% other. Would they not have a bias against religious literature?

I don't understand why you are trying to draw a link from an organization not assembled for any religious purpose, to that organizations views on religion. The "organization" has no position on religion. The people in it do. The most you can accomplish with statistics is to show a correlation suggesting that the people in charge of the organization have a bias towards religion.

You seem to be searching for some characterization atheistic beliefs when the very definition precludes that. If we were to call people who believe in unicorns "unicorists", then you would be an "aunicornist" (I am assuming). That would say nothing else about you no matter how hard someone tries to draw a link.

I was hoping theists would respond, because I'm pretty much arguing against myself, but it's fun to play devil's advocate.

Uh... ok.
invisibledeity
Posts: 48
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/10/2014 1:40:14 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 10:39:11 AM, Nebelous wrote:
I often see that when an organization has a majority percentage of atheists in their ranks they get labeled as being biased against religion. Would this be accurate?

Example: An organization get's polled on their beliefs and 93% say they don't believe in a god or have a religion. The remaining 7% are religious in some way.

Do you think the organization is biased? Would more information be needed to form a conclusion?

LOL!!! Don't be STUPiD!! atheists arent biased, theyre just RIGHT!!!
Nebelous
Posts: 58
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/10/2014 4:35:40 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/10/2014 1:40:14 PM, invisibledeity wrote:
At 3/9/2014 10:39:11 AM, Nebelous wrote:
I often see that when an organization has a majority percentage of atheists in their ranks they get labeled as being biased against religion. Would this be accurate?

Example: An organization get's polled on their beliefs and 93% say they don't believe in a god or have a religion. The remaining 7% are religious in some way.

Do you think the organization is biased? Would more information be needed to form a conclusion?

LOL!!! Don't be STUPiD!! atheists arent biased, theyre just RIGHT!!!

I honestly want to hear your opinion.
Nebelous
Posts: 58
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/10/2014 4:41:03 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/10/2014 1:34:43 PM, Double_R wrote:
I don't understand why you are trying to draw a link from an organization not assembled for any religious purpose, to that organizations views on religion. The "organization" has no position on religion. The people in it do. The most you can accomplish with statistics is to show a correlation suggesting that the people in charge of the organization have a bias towards religion.


The organization is made up of people. How would a bias not be broadcasted to your work? So if there's a correlation it implies a bias? Good answer.