The American Humanist Association has launched a website called “Kids Without God” aimed at promoting and glorifying atheism. It abounds in the usual fallacies (seriously, haven’t these folks ever taken Logic 101?) and is blatantly evangelistic.
The slogan across the bottom of the home page reads:
“Welcome to Kids Without God, a site for the millions of young people around the world who have embraced science, rejected superstition, and are dedicated to being Good Without A God!”
Let’s unpack that, shall we?
Fallacy #1: The slogan presents a false dichotomy by making the direct implication that one cannot be a theist AND embrace science. The fact is, science cannot, by its very definition, investigate the supernatural realm. Therefore, there is no logical contradiction between theism and science. Many theists are highly credentialed scientists, performing important research, teaching, or working in biomedical practice with a coherent worldview intact.
Fallacy #2: The slogan makes a straw man of theism by equating it with “superstition.” The Mirriam-Webster dictionary offers these three definitions of the term “superstition”:
- a belief or practice resulting from ignorance, fear of the unknown, trust in magic or chance, or a false conception of causation
- an irrational abject attitude of mind toward the supernatural, nature, or God resulting from superstition
- a notion maintained despite evidence to the contrary
If the writer is using definition #2, then they are erroneously stating that theism is irrational. On the contrary, there are excellent reasons that justify making the inference to the existence of God. The first one that comes to mind is the fine-tuning of the universe for life. Even the famous atheist Christopher Hitchens admitted that cosmic fine-tuning is a formidable problem for atheism. (If you click to watch that video, pay special attention to what he says at the end. VERY interesting.)
If the writer is using definition #3, then they are making the same mistake they made with the false dichotomy by implying that there is empirical evidence against the existence of God.
Now,what about that last part of the slogan, being “dedicated to being good without a god”? Well, sure, a human being can act in accordance with a particular society’s standards of laws and manners, but laws and manners vary all over the world. What is considered an atrocity in the United States may be common, accepted practice in the Sudan. But the slogan specifically uses the word “good.” By what standard could anything be called “good” or “bad” if God does not exist? Essentially, you can only say that it is possible to act in a way that the people around you LIKE if there is no God. You cannot, however, say that there is any such thing as GOOD if God does not exist. Only with a perfect standard by which to measure can morals and values exist objectively.
… if God does not exist, then morality is just a human convention, that is to say, morality is wholly subjective and non-binding. We might act in precisely the same ways that we do in fact act, but in the absence of God, such actions would no longer count as good (or evil), since if God does not exist, objective moral values do not exist. Thus, we cannot truly be good without God.
I encourage you to browse the “Kids Without God” website to make yourself familiar with the techniques and talking points of the new atheist evangelism campaign.
Parents, the Christian apologetics project is more important than ever. Arm yourselves and equip your children. It’s not a question of IF their faith will be assaulted, but WHEN.