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"There's no way to rule innocent men. The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren't enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible to live without breaking laws." -- Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged
"I have never seen the slightest scientific proof of the religious theories of heaven and hell, of future life for individuals, or of a personal God." -- Thomas Alva Edison
"The following talk show contains no dysfunctional families, no humiliating stereotypes, no lewd behavior, and absolutely no confrontational violence... we apologize for any inconvenience."
"We can hardly love someone who intentionally hurts us and keeps his reasons a secret unless for the most part we know his reasons for affecting us as he does and moreover know that they are benevolent." Richard M. Gale, "Some Difficulties in Theistic Treatments of Evil" The Evidential Argument from Evil (ed. Daniel Howard-Snyder, Indianapolis, IN: Indiana University Press, 1996), p. 211.
"Men have broad and large chests, and small narrow hips, and more understanding than women, who have but small and narrow breasts, and broad hips, to the end they should remain at home, sit still, keep house, and bear and bring up children." [Martin Luther, Table Talk]
"Whatever the motive, the consequence is that if a reputable scholar breathes so much as a hint of criticism of some detail of current Darwinian theory, the fact is eagerly seized on and blown up out of all proportion. So strong is this eagerness, it is as though there were a powerful amplifier, with a finely tuned microphone selectively listening out for anything that sounds the tiniest bit like opposition tp Darwinism. This is most unfortunate, for serious argument and criticism is a vitally important part of any science, and it would be tragic if scholars felt the need to muzzle themselves because of the microphones. Needless to say the amplifier, though powerful, is not hi-fi: there is plenty of distortion! A scientist who cautiously whispers some slight misgiving about a current nuance of Darwinism is liable to hear his distorted and barely recognizable words booming and echoing through the eagerly waiting loudspeakers." Richard Dawkins, The Blind Watchmaker (New York: W.W. Norton, 1986), p. 251.
"Liberty is lost through complacency and a subservient mindset. When we accept or even welcome automobile checkpoints, random searches, mandatory identification cards, and paramilitary police in our streets, we have lost a vital part of our American heritage. America was born of protest, revolution, and mistrust of government. Subservient societies neither maintain nor deserve freedom for long." - Congressman Ron Paul, August 9, 2004
"In a universe of electrons and selfish genes, blind physical forces and genetic replication, some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won't find any rhyme or reason in it, nor any justice. The universe that we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil, no good, nothing but pitiless indifference." --Richard Dawkins in "God's Utility Function," Scientific American, November 1995, p. 85.
"Suppose, however, that God did give this law to the Jews, and did tell them that whenever a man preached a heresy, or proposed to worship any other God that they should kill him; and suppose that afterward this same God took upon himself flesh, and came to this very chosen people and taught a different religion, and that thereupon the Jews crucified him; I ask you, did he not reap exactly what he had sown? What right would this god have to complain of a crucifixion suffered in accordance with his own command?" [Ingersoll's Works, Vol. 2, p. 259]
Moses: the self-proclaimed meekest of all men even though he allegedly spoke face to face with God and gave us the so-called Ten Commandments (though they aren't really ten in number); the man who wrote (or edited) the account of his own death and burial; the man who -- according to himself -- was God's spokesperson in the same way that Mohammed, Joseph Smith, Mary Baker Eddy, -- and a parcel of others -- claim to speak for God.
"There is no possibility whatsoever of reconciling science and theology, at least in Christendom. Either Jesus arose from the dead or He didn't. If he did, then Christianity becomes plausible; if He did not, then it is sheer nonsense. I defy any genuine scientists to say that he believes in the Resurrection, or indeed in any other cardinal dogma of the Christian system." [H.L. Mencken, "Prejudices"]
"...And no philosophy, sadly, has all the answers. No matter how assured we may be about certain aspects of our belief, there are always painful inconsistencies, exceptions, and contradictions. This is true in religion as it is in politics, and is self-evident to all except fanatics and the naive. As for the fanatics, whose number is legion in our own time, we might be advised to leave them to heaven. They will not, unfortunately, do us the same courtesy. They attack us and each other, and whatever their protestations to peaceful intent, the bloody record of history makes clear that they are easily disposed to restore to the sword. My own belief in God, then, is just that -- a matter of belief, not knowledge. My respect for Jesus Christ arises from the fact that He seems to have been the most virtuous inhabitant of Planet Earth. But even well-educated Christians are frustated in their thirst for certainty about the beloved figure of Jesus because of the undeniable ambiguity of the scriptural record. Such ambiguity is not apparent to children or fanatics, but every recognized Bible scholar is perfectly aware of it. Some Christians, alas, resort to formal lying to obscure such reality." [Steve Allen]
"Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence." -- John Adams
"History is full of people who out of fear, or ignorance, or lust for power has destroyed knowledge of immeasurable value which truly belongs to us all. We must not let it happen again." -- Carl Sagan (1934-1996) "Cosmos"
"I feel much freer now that I am certain the pope is the Antichrist." [Martin Luther]
"The feet of progress have always been shod by doubt." [Lemuel K. Washburn, _Is The Bible Worth Reading And Other Essays_]
"No statistical proofs exist that prayer reduces illness and mortality, except perhaps through a psychogenic enhancement of the immune system; if it were otherwise the whole world would pray continuously." Edward O. Wilson, Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge, (First edition, New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1998), p. 245.
"Moreover, they are nothing but thieves and robbers who daily eat no morsel and wear no thread of clothing which they have not stolen and pilfered from us by means of their accursed usury. Thus they live from day to day, together with wife and child, by theft and robbery, as arch-thieves and robbers, in the most impenitent security." [Martin Luther,"On the Jews and Their Lies",1543]
"The citizen's job is to be rude--to pierce the comfort of professional intercourse by boorish expressions of doubt." --John Ralston Saul, The Doubter's Companion
"It ain't the parts of the Bible that I can't understand that bother me, it is the parts that I do understand." [Mark Twain]