What Happens When We Don’t Encourage Critical Thinking: TeaBagging.

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One of the biggest challenges I have being an atheist is reconciling the fact that by challenging people to do critical thinking, I am actually violating what has become “etiquette” in our society.  Faith has to be immune to critical thinking because it could never actually stand up to it.  People don’t like questions like, “Why do you believe in God?” or “How did you come to believe in God?”  The answer is often, “I just do, and you should respect that.”

I respect people’s point of view when they can substantiate it.  And I am often seen as disrespectful just because I don’t kowtow automatically to everybody’s beliefs.  I’m still waiting for a valid explanation of why I should.

But I think this “freedom from critical thinking” that our culture works to protect has dangerous ramifications.  If people can follow a book blindly or follow an organization blindly, they can easily follow other people blindly.  That is what we saw yesterday at the teabagging rallies across the country.

I first heard about these tea parties a few weeks ago and I could not for the life of me understand what they were about.  People were upset about big spending?  No, people were upset about Obama’s big spending.  People were upset about their own taxes going up?  No, people were upset about rich people’s taxes going up.  Like, honestly, I have absolutely no understanding of what they were protesting… and the main reason I think this is the case is because they don’t either.

There are a ton of videos going around and here are just a couple (courtesy OhioDailyBlog and via Pam’s House Blend):

Listen to the rhetoric.  These people do not actually understand the current issues.  They are only spewing propaganda.  And let’s take a look at some of the signs they carried.

STOP KILLING BABIES WITH MY TAX MONEY

Miserable, Unsatisfied, Ill-disiplined, Demanding, Despotic, and Useless
A Philosophy of Sniveling BRATS

Comrade Hu$$ein: Freedom’$ Ball & Chain

I AM A BITTER CHRISTIAN CLINGING TO MY GUNS

NO TAXATION WITHOUT REPRESENTATION
TEA PARTY TODAY
TAR AND FEATHER TOMORROW

HEY BIG BROTHER… SHOW US YOUR REAL BIRTH CERTIFICATE!
CONSTITUTION: ARTICLE 2 SECTION 1

CONSTITUTION = LIBERTY NOT NATIONAL SOCIALIZM

OBAMA PUNISHES SUCCESS

Government is not God. It cannot be America’s economic savior.

Thou shall not steal applies to government too!

IS THIS DAY ONE OF THE SECOND AMERICAN REVOLATION

YES… WE CAN! VOTE ENCUMBANTS OUT!

These rallies had nothing to do with taxes or freedom.

These were anti-Obama rallies.  These were rallies of racism.  These were rallies of fundamentalist propaganda.

These were celebrations of the freedom we have from critical thinking… the freedom we have to be brainwashed to follow whatever hateful rhetoric we’ve been conditioned to follow.

I couldn’t help but notice all the Christian undertones.  And the poor spelling.

I’m tired of “Live and let live.”  It’s time for “Live and educate.”

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There are 4 Comments to "What Happens When We Don’t Encourage Critical Thinking: TeaBagging."

  • Fantastic blog. Great read! Keep it up!

  • Anastasia says:

    Great post. I completely agree.

    I respect everyone’s right to disagree with government policies, but please, please make an attempt to educate yourself before spouting off crazy things!

    I wonder how they got through grade school, let alone high school, without at least a basic understanding of, for example, Hitler. Sheesh.

  • Anastasia says:

    Holy crap, I just re read the list of signs and saw:
    I AM A BITTER CHRISTIAN CLINGING TO MY GUNS
    Be afraid, sane people, be very afraid. We’ve all seen what levels of horror religious fanatics can attain.

  • Keri says:

    Great post, thanks. The stupidity of the average american never ceases to amaze and amuse me.

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