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Atheism on Speech/Debate Teams?

PublicForumFTW
Posts: 13
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1/10/2010 6:40:18 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Has anyone else noticed how common it is? Almost my entire HS team consists of atheists, and the rest, agnostic. Well.. There is one girl, who is Mormon.

Anybody else ever wonder why this is?
Xer
Posts: 7,776
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1/10/2010 6:43:36 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
The more educated, intelligent, and intellectual one is, the less religious one is. The same pattern appears on this site and in academia.
omelet
Posts: 416
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1/10/2010 6:50:02 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
It's not a strict causal relationship, but there is certainly a negative correlation between intelligence and religiosity, and a positive one between intelligence and likelihood to be on a debate team.
PublicForumFTW
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1/10/2010 6:55:43 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
That is actually what I assumed it was.
The more logical one becomes, the less logical the existence of a "God" or other deity seems to be. (Though this isn't always the case.) As does "walking on water" or "parting the Red Sea" as found in the Christian bible.
omelet
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1/10/2010 6:56:37 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
I would say that in addition to the causal argument about intelligence above, there is the important factor of argumentativeness. Atheists often become atheists partially because they are alright with getting into conflict with society that often has other expectations. Many of the qualities that make one a good debater also often lead people to atheism - not just intelligence.
Discipulus
Posts: 36
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1/10/2010 7:01:53 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 6:40:18 PM, PublicForumFTW wrote:
Has anyone else noticed how common it is? Almost my entire HS team consists of atheists, and the rest, agnostic. Well.. There is one girl, who is Mormon.

Anybody else ever wonder why this is?

Most religions are self-contradictory and are not based in logic. Thus, intelligent people often shun religion. Also, it is extremely difficult to fit religious beliefs with modern science/philosophy. Thus, most religious people never try to rise high enough to do so. The few that do, however, are highly intelligent.
PublicForumFTW
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1/10/2010 7:02:22 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
I'll agree with that as well. Rather than falling into "social norms" arguing? Ok. As a debater and hopefully a soon-to-be lawyer I enjoy arguing and I don't really mind what is believed to be "socially accepted." Is this what you're trying to get at?
omelet
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1/10/2010 7:22:50 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 7:02:22 PM, PublicForumFTW wrote:
I'll agree with that as well. Rather than falling into "social norms" arguing? Ok. As a debater and hopefully a soon-to-be lawyer I enjoy arguing and I don't really mind what is believed to be "socially accepted." Is this what you're trying to get at?

Yep. A big reason people fit into social norms is because most people don't enjoy conflict. Many people who are likely to end up on a debate team, however, don't mind conflict so much. This brings down one of the main barriers some people have to being atheists.

Intelligence is of course a factor as well. And the fact that debaters are often atheists for these two reasons also creates a new subculture that has atheism as sort of a social norm. Some people undoubtedly adopt atheism just because it's widely held to be superior amongst their fellow debaters.
PublicForumFTW
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1/10/2010 7:33:05 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
I see that too.
Intelligent people that join speech/debate teams are too logical to believe in a religion.
So, the ones who aren't afraid of a conflict, begin a social norm within debate teams, then all those who join, even if swayed easily, adopt atheism because it is a social norm on the team. xD
Are we over-thinking a bit? Probably.
I don't care. :P
PoeJoe
Posts: 3,822
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1/10/2010 8:59:16 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
I disagree with Nag and omelet's intelligence argument. My school may very well be an anomaly, but in my AP classes, there seems to be a more-or-less regular distribution of the religious and nonreligious. I dare say that the elite of the elites at my school are mostly Christian.

Moreover, I doubt intelligence really becomes a factor at the high school level. Not to self-deprecate, but we aren't that smart...yet. We have not come close to realizing our potentials.

I think the main separator is something which omelet already mentioned: rebelliousness. I used to be an atheist, and during this time, I was very loud about my beliefs. I'd constantly get into debates with my friends. I would let no argument go unrebutted. But I've calmed down since then.

I'm aware this is a personal argument, but I think it still applies: atheists do tend to be on the rebellious side.
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Volkov
Posts: 9,765
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1/10/2010 9:07:49 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 8:59:16 PM, PoeJoe wrote:
I'm aware this is a personal argument, but I think it still applies: atheists do tend to be on the rebellious side.

That explains a lot. No wonder why I live with my mother, watch Law and Order, abhor drug use, and vote for a mainstream political party with such enthusiasm usually reserved by people my age for keg parties and strip clubs.

I'm such a rebel.
PoeJoe
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1/10/2010 9:11:11 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 9:07:49 PM, Volkov wrote:
At 1/10/2010 8:59:16 PM, PoeJoe wrote:
I'm aware this is a personal argument, but I think it still applies: atheists do tend to be on the rebellious side.

That explains a lot. No wonder why I live with my mother, watch Law and Order, abhor drug use, and vote for a mainstream political party with such enthusiasm usually reserved by people my age for keg parties and strip clubs.

I'm such a rebel.

Key words are tend to be.
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Xer
Posts: 7,776
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1/10/2010 9:13:45 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 9:11:11 PM, PoeJoe wrote:
Key words are tend to be.

You're partly right. My friends who are agnostic or atheist aren't rebellious. But I know kids who are just militant with their belief, they tend to go to public school though. :)
studentathletechristian8
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1/10/2010 9:16:39 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
"The more educated, intelligent, and intellectual one is, the less religious one is. The same pattern appears on this site and in academia.

I disagree. I'm not tooting my own horn, but I am well educated, intelligent, and intellectual. I'll tell you what uni I get accepted, and we'll see how "dumb" some Christians are. Btw, you prob don't care, but I feel like I'm losing my religion right now.
Volkov
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1/10/2010 9:18:32 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 9:16:39 PM, studentathletechristian8 wrote:
Btw, you prob don't care, but I feel like I'm losing my religion right now.

I care... well, I'm interested. Why are you losing faith?
Xer
Posts: 7,776
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1/10/2010 9:20:58 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 9:16:39 PM, studentathletechristian8 wrote:
I disagree. I'm not tooting my own horn, but I am well educated, intelligent, and intellectual. I'll tell you what uni I get accepted, and we'll see how "dumb" some Christians are.

Straw man. Intelligent people CAN be religious, but there is a greater percentage of non-religious people the more intelligent a demographic is.

Btw, you prob don't care, but I feel like I'm losing my religion right now.

It's because you are. People are starting to see the absolute crap that is in the Bible, and religion in general.
InsertNameHere
Posts: 15,699
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1/10/2010 9:25:00 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 6:43:36 PM, Nags wrote:
The more educated, intelligent, and intellectual one is, the less religious one is. The same pattern appears on this site and in academia.

Are you calling me stupid? lol jk. Ok, fine. I'll admit, I'm far from being an intellectual and philosophy often bores me to death, but I am intelligent(I think...).
PublicForumFTW
Posts: 13
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1/10/2010 9:29:19 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Rebellion. Yes. I'd agree..

And your highschool is much like mine. "Elite of the elite" are Christians. But then... Are they REALLY intelligent or just overachievers? At my school, they tend to just be overachievers... Actually two of the most intelligent people I've met, who happen to be atheists, have about a 2.5-3.0 GPA. So it depends how you measure intelligence.

But this is just my highschool... As well as a personal opinion.
PoeJoe
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1/10/2010 9:31:10 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 9:13:45 PM, Nags wrote:
At 1/10/2010 9:11:11 PM, PoeJoe wrote:
Key words are tend to be.

You're partly right. My friends who are agnostic or atheist aren't rebellious. But I know kids who are just militant with their belief, they tend to go to public school though. :)

Well, you said you were going to a Catholic school, didn't you?

Any sense of rebelliousness would be outweighed by the fear of getting your @ss kicked.
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PublicForumFTW
Posts: 13
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1/10/2010 9:34:26 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 8:59:16 PM, PoeJoe wrote:
I disagree with Nag and omelet's intelligence argument. My school may very well be an anomaly, but in my AP classes, there seems to be a more-or-less regular distribution of the religious and nonreligious. I dare say that the elite of the elites at my school are mostly Christian.

Moreover, I doubt intelligence really becomes a factor at the high school level. Not to self-deprecate, but we aren't that smart...yet. We have not come close to realizing our potentials.

I think the main separator is something which omelet already mentioned: rebelliousness. I used to be an atheist, and during this time, I was very loud about my beliefs. I'd constantly get into debates with my friends. I would let no argument go unrebutted. But I've calmed down since then.

I'm aware this is a personal argument, but I think it still applies: atheists do tend to be on the rebellious side.

Rebellion. Yes. I'd agree..

And your highschool is much like mine. "Elite of the elite" are Christians. But then... Are they REALLY intelligent or just overachievers? At my school, they tend to just be overachievers... Actually two of the most intelligent people I've met, who happen to be atheists, have about a 2.5-3.0 GPA. So it depends how you measure intelligence.

But this is just my highschool... As well as a personal opinion.

(reposted for clarity..I didn't realize how many pages there were and forgot to post with a quote.)
Xer
Posts: 7,776
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1/10/2010 9:35:27 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 9:31:10 PM, PoeJoe wrote:
Well, you said you were going to a Catholic school, didn't you?

Any sense of rebelliousness would be outweighed by the fear of getting your @ss kicked.

Nobody would get their a$s kicked because of dissenting political or religious beliefs in my school, so their is no fear or intimidation there. I think it has more to do with that my school is ranked 5th best in Massachusetts (see: intelligent people), and the public school s*cks.
PublicForumFTW
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1/10/2010 9:40:03 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 9:35:27 PM, Nags wrote:
At 1/10/2010 9:31:10 PM, PoeJoe wrote:
Well, you said you were going to a Catholic school, didn't you?

Any sense of rebelliousness would be outweighed by the fear of getting your @ss kicked.

Nobody would get their a$s kicked because of dissenting political or religious beliefs in my school, so their is no fear or intimidation there. I think it has more to do with that my school is ranked 5th best in Massachusetts (see: intelligent people), and the public school s*cks.

Haha. Yeah. Probably at least 90% in my of my PUBLIC SCHOOL are Christians. 8% Atheist. 1% Agnostic (probably more are Agnostic, but nobody knows what it means so they say they are Atheist). And like 1% Other.
PoeJoe
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1/10/2010 9:43:30 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 9:35:27 PM, Nags wrote:
At 1/10/2010 9:31:10 PM, PoeJoe wrote:
Well, you said you were going to a Catholic school, didn't you?

Any sense of rebelliousness would be outweighed by the fear of getting your @ss kicked.

Nobody would get their a$s kicked because of dissenting political or religious beliefs in my school, so their is no fear or intimidation there. I think it has more to do with that my school is ranked 5th best in Massachusetts (see: intelligent people), and the public school s*cks.

Well, I'd interpret that as a result of being posh. There's a certain, concentrated etiquette among rich blokes, and among their institutions, there's probably a decent amount of civility because of it.
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TheSkeptic
Posts: 1,362
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1/10/2010 10:29:05 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 8:59:16 PM, PoeJoe wrote:
I disagree with Nag and omelet's intelligence argument. My school may very well be an anomaly, but in my AP classes, there seems to be a more-or-less regular distribution of the religious and nonreligious. I dare say that the elite of the elites at my school are mostly Christian.

There is no doubt in my mind that there are many intelligent theists in every field of academia; however, what you will notice is that there are some which have a much less concentration than others, most notably philosophy. The reason is quite simple: those who are well-educated and well-versed in philosophical/political/social issues will likely make an educated stance on religion. You can be very intellegient in the field of chemistry or math, but that won't affect your religious standpoint too much. But things such as debate teams, where they force you to critically examine topics of importance, will likely do the opposite.

Moreover, I doubt intelligence really becomes a factor at the high school level. Not to self-deprecate, but we aren't that smart...yet. We have not come close to realizing our potentials.

I'm sure most of us here are more intelligent than even the average American adult. Sure, perhaps not in every aspect of life (obviously) but there are many politically well-versed people here - most of us actually have a clue what is going on in the world. Compare this to the millions of uninformed idiots in this world.

I think the main separator is something which omelet already mentioned: rebelliousness. I used to be an atheist, and during this time, I was very loud about my beliefs. I'd constantly get into debates with my friends. I would let no argument go unrebutted. But I've calmed down since then.

Rebellion might be part of it, but I would like to think that at least the majority of atheists are mostly intellectually honest, and not simply being spiteful.

I'm aware this is a personal argument, but I think it still applies: atheists do tend to be on the rebellious side.

And this is why personal arguments = bad.
Ragnar_Rahl
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1/10/2010 11:34:31 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
I disagree. I'm not tooting my own horn, but I am well educated, intelligent, and intellectual. I'll tell you what uni I get accepted, and we'll see how "dumb" some Christians are. Btw, you prob don't care, but I feel like I'm losing my religion right now.
This case seems to SUPPORT the negative correlation of religion and intelligence. See: losing.
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
Cerebral_Narcissist
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1/11/2010 12:33:07 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/10/2010 6:43:36 PM, Nags wrote:
The more educated, intelligent, and intellectual one is, the less religious one is. The same pattern appears on this site and in academia.

The more educated, intelligent, and intellectual one is, the less religious one is likely to be. The same pattern appears on this site and in academia.

I think thats more accurate.
I am voting for Innomen because of his intelligence, common sense, humility and the fact that Juggle appears to listen to him. Any other Presidential style would have a large sub-section of the site up in arms. If I was President I would destroy the site though elitism, others would let it run riot. Innomen represents a middle way that works, neither draconian nor anarchic and that is the only way things can work. Plus he does it all without ego trips.
Ryft
Posts: 18
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1/11/2010 2:00:50 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
There is more to the 'rebellion' angle than meets the eye, especially in North American culture; the age distribution is particularly noteworthy in regard to this thread (junior and high school). Likewise noteworthy is the typical ignorance about and failure to distinguish between Atheist, Agnostic, and Non-Religious; i.e., one who identifies as Non-Religious may nevertheless be a Theist. The number of Atheists and Agnostics is often highly exaggerated (usually by force of sheer rhetoric), as can be seen when examining real data which shows they comprise a mere 2.3% and 10.0% of the American population, respectively. Moreoever, there are a greater number of college graduates among the religious than there are among the non-religious, the latter being only slightly better educated than the average American.

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* Data taken from the American Religious Identification Survey 2008. It takes a very large sample of the population to develop a reliable portrait of minority groups as small as Atheists and Agnostics. The American Religious Identification Survey 2008 is perhaps the only survey large enough, based on 54,461 respondents across the United States.