"Theists, please stop _____"

  Dear theists of the Internet,
below are several uninformed things many theists have said to me when the topics of a/theism, religiosity, or secularism are discussed online.  I realize that many of these things are said with good intentions or out of ignorance, but they in fact are quite douchey and don't inspire useful conversation. Such words only serve to reinforce an image of immaturity and an extreme absence of understanding concerning the philosophy of theology and a/theism. While these are all primarily things the less educated and/or less confident theists parrot from their ministers and friends, I figured I'd throw out a few personal responses.  (that was me admitting that this is mostly low-hanging fruit) 
  I write these as my responses, not as anything representative of atheism or the stance of other atheists. My responses aren't meant to be expansive or thorough, just condensed sentiments that also hopefully portray my willingness to not be as insulting as the actual sentiments I'm sentimenting about. 
  In short: I'm about to complain about some accusations and mentalities that are harmful or just plain insulting. 

"You hate God."

  I hate Yahweh like I hate ___________.

a) Count Dracula
b) Emperor Palpatine
c) Joffrey Baratheon
d) Jar Jar Binks
e) [other deplorable fictional character]

"There are no atheists in foxholes/plane troubles/hospital beds."

  You think a near-death experience will "wake me up"...  If I was likely desperate, not thinking straight, and/or fearful I'd consider your supernatural claims?  Disparaging the integrity of others in such a manner comes across as insecure and pretentious.  This is the same manner of insecurity expressed in the "you were never a true Muslim/Christian" accusation.  

  'There are no actual Christians on hospital beds, they'll also pray to the gods of other religions out of desperation and fear because they secretly doubt what they claim to believe.'  ^See how nasty and ignorant that sounds?

"You're just being rebellious." or "You're just going through a phase."

  Yeah, because the only reason someone wouldn't agree with you is because they're "rebellious" or "deceived."  Such presumptive words are dismissive of the reasoning and motives that went into forming the individual's stance.  

  I'm not being rebellious, I'm simply disagreeing with you.

"Where do you get your meaning?"

  I get my meaning from the same place everyone does- my associations, my accomplishments, and my aspirations.
  We don't value or appreciate things solely based on their longevity and, concerning supernatural claims towards meaning, I think these guys said it nicely: "What the believer must establish is that nonbelievers who deny cosmic meaning but still claim to possess personal meaning are not justified in maintaining this position."

"You were just hurt by the church." or "You had a bad church experience."

  Nope.  I had a predominantly-positive experience at the multiple churches I regularly attended throughout my life.  If you'd like to read me poorly describing it, you can do that here.
  Accusing someone of disagreeing with you just because they may or may not have had a legitimately off-putting experience with your group is pathetic and may be wholly separate their conclusion on the god hypothesis.
  There are bad apples in every bunch; a/theism doesn't address personalities or convictions, just the individual's stance on the god claim.

"You're just angry at God."

  I'm also so gosh darn angry at the Grinch for stealing Christmas.  

  So Christians don't refuse adherence to Islam's teachings out of "anger at Allah"?  Of course not, that'd be a dumb accusation to make.  Mormons aren't angry at Vishnu and atheists aren't angry at Yahweh.
  Telling someone they don't believe something exists because they are angered by it is not only dumb, it's insulting.  Contrary to what many pastors regularly tell their congregations, you'll be hard pressed to find atheists blaming any gods for the afflictions of society or their life circumstances.  Theists are the ones who ascribe divine influence; indicting everyone of secretly being a theist is both conspiratorial and arrogant.

"Where do you get your morals?"

  Empathy, reasoning, evaluating of the consequences, weighing of the harm and well-being of those involved, considering the information I have concerning the situation.
  Same as you.  
  Now, if you'll excuse me, I haven't made a puppy cry yet, today.  

"Aren't you worried about Hell?" or "What if you're wrong?"

  Bringing Hell (whether threats of eternal torture or annihilation) into a discussion of the truthfulness of a matter (theism/Christianity) suggests to me that I'm more free to consider the validity of ideas than you are.  Such threats, whether of torture or oblivion, don't obscure my earnest investigation into alternative beliefs/methodologies and the sincere reasons people adhere to them.

  I'm as concerned about going
to Hell as I am of Krampus visiting me in December.  
I discuss my feelings on the question of "what if you're wrong?" here.

"Why do you pick on Christianity?"

  I criticize, ridicule, examine, and muse about Christianity predominantly because it's the religion I grew up with.  I also focus on it more because it's the most prevalent religion of the U.S.A. and is the religion most often employed to influence public policy and regularly get itself special treatment (often to the detriment of non-Christians.)  

  But, hey, Hinduism is pretty dang goofy too.

"Why bother if there's no afterlife?" or "Why even live if this is all there is?"

  Are you incapable of enjoying a party just because you're aware it'll eventually end?
Of course not.  
  Again, we don't value or appreciate things solely based on their longevity.  It is often the limited availability of a thing which inspires value.

  If I were to offer a piece of conversational, argumentative advice to the theists (hey, you atheists listen to) in the crowd: care about what labels mean.

atheist ≠ naturalist | atheist ≠ nihilist | atheist ≠ anti-theist | atheist ≠ democrat 
atheist ≠ skeptic | atheist ≠ misotheist | atheist ≠ pro-choice | atheist ≠ magenta 

Atheism just means that individual would say "no" if asked "do you think a god exists?" 

  You learn nothing of their values, of their personality, of their stances, all you've learned is that they haven't been convinced that a god exists. Both sides are frequently guilty of making immediate assumptions upon learning the theistic status of one another.  Atheism and theism are not comprehensive worldviews; they do not suggest ethical methodology, politics, or intelligence.  When presented with an aspect of someone that isn't necessarily reflective of their other beliefs, for you to attribute beyond what you've actually learned means "you're no longer communicating, you're simply rehearsing your own prejudices." 
  We should all try to avoid assumptions and accusations when we can.  Tacking on unnecessary baggage to labels with inflammatory/hasty words doesn't help maintain a useful dialogue.  

(what those "atheists believe that nothing exploded into everything" memes make you look like)

  The artwork in this post was commissioned from Swifty (check out his blog here.)  I specifically requested doodle-like, simple artwork for this write-up, so his artistic ability isn't at all reflected in a representative manner here.  Give it a peek.  

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