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I'm not religious but I appreciate where he's going with this. Did you see it?

The following was written by Ben Stein and recited by him on CBS Sunday Morning Commentary.

My confession:
I don't like getting pushed around for being a Jew, and I don't think Christians like getting pushed around for being Christians.

I think people who believe in God are sick and tired of getting pushed around, period.

I have no idea where the concept came from, that America is an explicitly atheist country. I can't find it in the Constitution and I don't like it being shoved down my throat.

Or maybe I can put it another way: where did the idea come from that we should worship celebrities and we aren't allowed to worship God as we understand Him?

I guess that's a sign that I'm getting old, too. But there are a lot of us who are wondering where these celebrities came from and where the America we knew went to.

In light of the many jokes we send to one another for a laugh, this is a little different: This is not intended to be a joke; it's not funny, it's intended to get you thinking.

In light of recent events - terrorists attacks, school shootings, etc. I think it started when Madeleine Murray O'Hare (she was murdered, her body found a few years ago) complained she didn't want prayer in our schools, and we said OK.

Then someone said you better not read the Bible in school.

The Bible says thou shalt not kill; thou shalt not steal, and love your neighbour as yourself. And we said OK.

Then Dr. Benjamin Spock said we shouldn't spank our children when they misbehave, because their little personalities would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem (Dr. Spock's son committed suicide). We said an expert should know what he's talking about. And we said okay.

Now we're asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they don't know right from wrong, and why it doesn't bother them to kill strangers, their classmates, and themselves.

Probably, if we think about it long and hard enough, we can figure it out. I think it has a great deal to do with, 'WE REAP WHAT WE SOW.'

Funny how simple it is for people to trash God and then wonder why the world's going to hell. Funny how we believe what the newspapers say, but question what the Bible says.

Funny how you can send 'jokes' through e-mail and they spread like wildfire, but when you start sending messages regarding the Lord, people think twice about sharing.

Funny how lewd, crude, vulgar and obscene articles pass freely through cyberspace, but public discussion of God is suppressed in the school and workplace.

Are you laughing yet?

Funny how when you forward this message, you will not send it to many on your address list because you're not sure what they believe, or what they will think of you for sending it.

Funny how we can be more worried about what other people think of us than what God thinks of us.

Pass it on if you think it has merit.

If not, then just discard it. No one will know you did. But, if you discard this thought process, don't sit back and complain about what bad shape the world is in.

My Best Regards, Honestly and Respectfully,

Ben Stein


Asked by jeanclaudia at 1:22 PM on Jul. 18, 2013 in Religion & Beliefs

Level 32 (56,918 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (19)
  • I don't think there is a double standard. What I think is happening is for once in American history we are trying to embrace other beliefs instead of catering to Christianity. And many take that as an attack bc they are no longer the only accepted way to believe. For so long prayer and the Christian god was touted S the one and only and if you DARE disagree-watch out! But that no longer happens. We are all free to believe as our hearts tell us too and Christians can no longer silence it.

    Answer by sahmamax2 at 2:33 PM on Jul. 18, 2013

  • "My daughter's pre-K classroom last year couldn't have a Nativity scene displayed; that would have been pushing Christian beliefs in public school. Not allowed. But there was a menorah in that classroom, and Kwanzaa candles, and that was okay because the symbols were teaching the children to embrace diversity."

    And how many decades, exactly, were Christian items placed in classrooms without a second thought?

    I have to wonder how many American Christians would see themselves as persecuted if there weren't "experts" constantly telling them they're being persecuted?

    Answer by Mrs_Prissy at 3:02 PM on Jul. 18, 2013

  • No disrespect intended for you, OP, I just don't really agree with a lot of what he's saying. I agree with having a secular government and keeping religion out of school, all that. I don't see it as pushing anyone around, just giving everyone equal freedom. So honestly, while I even typically like Ben Stein, I just feel "meh" about what he's saying here. I don't think things are as extreme as he's making them out to be - DH comes home all the time saying they were talking about religion at work, for example. Students are free to read the Bible or pray or discuss on their own - we did all the time in high school. I don't see the idea of forfeiting our status of privilege in the name of equality the way he seems to, and I realize that just as many people get hell (or fired, etc) for being Atheist or non-Abrahamic as Christians/Jews get hell for their beliefs...

    Answer by bandgeek521 at 2:10 PM on Jul. 18, 2013

  • SNOPES is your friend


    Ben Stein is the new George Carlin, people are falsely attributing things to him all the time.  People should be ashamed for forwarding something that falsely claims someone committed suicide.


    Answer by NotPanicking at 2:18 PM on Jul. 18, 2013

  • I think it's ridiculous

    The world has ALWAYS had bad in it. I don't think that God or lack of one have anything to do with it. There are as many awful people who DO claim to believe in one, as there are who don't

    Answer by charlotsomtimes at 1:32 PM on Jul. 18, 2013

  • Yea-I don't blame an unseen being for causing the human issues we have mostly bc he is so unseen. Not having a bible or prayer in school hardly removes this god from ones heart. Allowing people the freedom to worship within or not is hardly the cause of civil discord.
    If people want a personal rewarding relationship with a god there is absolutely nothing standing in their way. But when this unseen deity continues to remain unseen dont blame others for it.

    Answer by sahmamax2 at 1:32 PM on Jul. 18, 2013

  • I think people who believe in God are sick and tired of getting pushed around, period.

    Which god? Are all of. those who were killed if they didn't convert to Christianity included?

    I have no idea where the concept came from, that America is an explicitly atheist country. I can't find it in the Constitution and I don't like it being shoved down my throat.

    Wow I've never heard that o e before... Honestly I've only hard Christians say that America was founded Christianity.

    To be honest I don't agree or appreciate anything he said.

    Answer by skinnyslokita at 2:56 PM on Jul. 18, 2013

  • Pretty sure it's fake and it's wrong anyways. First off O'Hare was not the one that wanted prayer out of school. It was actually JEWISH families whose kids attended the school. Check out the case of Engel vs Vitale
    From there the misinformation just gets worse and worse. In fact the whole article is crap.

    Answer by KristiS11384 at 3:42 PM on Jul. 18, 2013

  • I don't think he's saying it's God's doing. I think he's just addressing one's ability to have their belief system and how that has been chipped away over the years.

    HOW? If you truly believe, then how can anyone take that away from you? There are still churches, Bibles, religious music and movies, there are still Bible camps and things like that and you carry it in your heart and soul wherever you go so???

    Answer by charlotsomtimes at 1:55 PM on Jul. 18, 2013

  • Atheists are not to blame. Parents need to look at their own selves and see where they've failed in raising their children to be good solid citizens.


    Answer by charlotsomtimes at 1:56 PM on Jul. 18, 2013