It seems to be all the rage, as atheists make their way to the forefront of society, for those who work to hold atheist down to misrepresent them. High-profile religious individuals start it, and, just as I would expect of people who obviously do not make it a habit of demanding proof upon which they build their "belief" systems, their minions believe the misrepresentations and cause them to proliferate.
It's obvious to anyone paying attention that these high-profile religious folk will stop at nothing to sell their myths... even if it means they have to misrepresent atheists to do it.
Repeatedly certain religious people apply their brand of "logic" to what they believe to be true of atheists. And it is obvious that certain high-profile Christians, for example, are excellent at misleading their minions. This is evidenced in the regurgitation of nonsense that fills every nook and cranny of human communication. On the internet, TV, and newspapers, we are shown just how far-reaching this ignorant regurgitation is.
Letters to editors from the "common man," blogs, forum posts, article comment sections, and religiously slanted news outlets all give us a glimpse at how effectively religious "icons" brainwash the limited-thinking masses. It is apparent that these followers either don't have the capacity or the propensity to critically consider the things they are told.
As I have pointed out in previous articles, one high-profile Christian in particular, who has many followers, contends that "atheists believe that nothing created everything." Yet, when Ray Comfort is challenged to provide support for this contention, he fails to deliver. Of course. He cannot provide proof for this contenetion. Why? Because atheists do not "believe" that. He makes a feeble attempt to offer up proof to support his allegations. And what he provides turns out to not be proof at all.
We have religious columnists who are asked to write about atheism. One in particular, Kylie Graham, wrote an article, Faith gives believers something to live for, on The Daily Evergreen. It seems to me that very few religious writers can write about atheists or atheism objectively. They bring with them to their writings certain misconceptions passed down to them that they then pass on. And their readers read it and believe it and pass it on, and so it goes...
From an atheist perspective, if there is no god and no belief system, we are left with nothing. It can then be argued that an individual can have the freedom to live life as he deems fit, free from moral codes and a god who loves you.
First, let us get one thing straight... what she said is "from the atheist perspective" is not, in fact, from the atheist perspective. It is her from her religious perspective. She is standing outside of atheism looking in through religious-colored glasses. By doing so, she is misrepresenting atheists in general.
Second, atheists do not think that they are "left with nothing" because they do not believe in deities. Quite the contrary. They (I am speaking generally here) tend to look at the world around in all its wonder and realize that there is so much more than nothing... there is everything! They understand that they have so much they have yet to discover and explore. That, my friends, is something!
Third, as is typical of misinformed or misguided religious people, Graham presumes that for an atheist to "live life as he deems fit" necessarily means that he is living a life "free from moral code." That is utter rubbish. Atheists do have "morals." They just don't happen to derive them from scripture. Scripture derives morality from humanity... not the other way around. It can be, and has been, argued that atheists tend to be more moralistic than religious people. More on that at a later date.
Graham is the epitome of the typical regurgitation machine. But, really, what more could I expect of a person who obviously doesn't get it. Her simplistic regurgitation of what and who atheists are is made even more clear in the fact that she goes on in her article to bring up her version of Pascal's Wager. And, if I had to guess, I'd "wager" that she has never heard of Pascal and therefore has never explored all the problems with his contention. Another article for another day.