These considerations are in play here as well… saying “God loves trans people” has absolutely no more underlying justification, evidence or substance than does “God hates fags”. Neither party has any evidence on which to base this, and both are just extrapolations based on assuming God’s will ought reflect their own. We cannot possibly know how God feels about anyone (entertaining briefly the possibility that He even exists). When you introduce “God loves trans people” into the dialogue, you have nothing backing you up with which to cause a transphobic religious believer to accept your message or reconsider their position, but you have just validated, supported and helped normalize his belief in God- a God that he probably thinks hates us very, very much.
- Andrew Sullivan: I have never doubted the existence of God. Never. My acceptance of God’s existence--of a force beyond everything and the source of everything--goes so far back in my consciousness and memory that I can neither recall “finding” this faith nor being taught it. So when I am asked to justify this belief, as you reasonably do, I am at a loss. At this layer of faith, the first critical layer, the layer that includes all religious people and many who call themselves spiritual rather than religious, I can offer no justification as such. I have just never experienced the ordeal of consciousness without it. It is the air I have always breathed. I meet atheists and am as baffled at their lack of faith--at this level--as you are at my attachment to it. When people ask me how I came to choose this faith, I can only say it chose me. I have no ability to stop believing. Crises in my life--death of loved ones, diagnosis with a fatal illness, emotional loss--have never shaken this faith. In fact, they have all strengthened it. I know of no “proof” that could dissuade me of this, since no “proof” ever persuaded me of it.
- Sam Harris: You appear to see some strange, epistemological significance in the fact that you cannot remember when or how you acquired your faith. Surely the roots of many of your beliefs are similarly obscure. I don’t happen to remember when or how I came to believe that Pluto is a planet. Should I say that this belief “chose me”? What if, upon hearing that astronomers have changed their opinion about Pluto, I announced that “I have no ability to stop believing?. I know of no ‘proof’ that could dissuade me of [Pluto’s planethood], since no ‘proof’ ever persuaded me of it.”
Posted February 16, 2012 at 8:12pm in kent hovind creationism science evolution god young earth darwin
There is no good reason to believe that anything that could coherently be called God exists. A rational person does not waste time believing or even being agnostic about things that there are no good reasons to accept.
— John Harris, in a collection of explanations from public figures as to why they don’t believe in God.