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Sun May 25, 2014, 12:14 PM

Penn Jillette receives death threats because of atheist views

Magician Penn Jillette, from Penn& Teller, has received death threats for his anti-religious beliefs. He has written books titled God, No! and Every Day is an Atheist Holiday! Penn is, and always has been, outspoken about his beliefs which has caused numerous death threats over the years.

In an interview with Seven magazine, Penn said “I think that 9/11 made a lot of atheists more vocal. A lot of us…Just took that as a sign of how dangerous it was to be quiet at all. I don’t think anybody became an atheist because of that event. But a lot of people who were atheist decided to shut up less about it. But I’ve been an outspoken atheist for 40 years. "

He joked about comparing death threats with Richard Dawkins and South Park creator Trey Parker. Penn continues on with the interview saying the death threats he receives are from mentally ill people, who may also happen to be religious.

He said “And all of a sudden it came to me that we weren’t really talking about religion at all. We were talking about mentally ill people we happen to label in a certain way. And the number are so, so, so small…yeah, once in a while the police are called on someone who’s written something that crosses a line, and that’s sad – and that person could just as easily be an atheist, or anything. You can talk all you want about the violent imagery of religion – but it’s not the violent imagery of religion that’s making people send out death threats. It’s a mental illness."

http://www.goddiscussion.com/115235/penn-jillette-receives-death-threats-because-of-atheist-views/

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Arrow 21 replies Author Time Post
Reply Penn Jillette receives death threats because of atheist views (Original post)
cleanhippie May 2014 OP
Humanist_Activist May 2014 #1
Ed Suspicious May 2014 #2
Humanist_Activist May 2014 #3
pinto May 2014 #4
okasha May 2014 #6
Humanist_Activist May 2014 #7
okasha May 2014 #9
Humanist_Activist May 2014 #10
okasha May 2014 #13
cleanhippie May 2014 #8
Lordquinton May 2014 #11
okasha May 2014 #12
Lordquinton May 2014 #16
okasha May 2014 #17
Lordquinton May 2014 #20
cleanhippie May 2014 #21
Warren Stupidity May 2014 #14
cleanhippie May 2014 #15
Act_of_Reparation May 2014 #18
pinto May 2014 #19
Uben May 2014 #5

Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Sun May 25, 2014, 12:28 PM

1. Are we supposed to be surprised by this? PZ Meyers got death threats for "desecrating" a wafer.

 

These are not rational people, they value their gods above people.

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Response to Humanist_Activist (Reply #1)

Sun May 25, 2014, 01:07 PM

2. It isn't supposed to be surprising. It's supposed to be appalling.

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Response to Ed Suspicious (Reply #2)

Sun May 25, 2014, 01:11 PM

3. True, it is appalling, to non-theists, various religious types though will find a way to...

 

"blame the victim" to excuse the behavior of their compatriots, I'm sure they will flood this thread soon enough. We are responsible for the shit that falls on us, I guess because we are atheists or something. I was just told that myself.

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Sun May 25, 2014, 01:12 PM

4. I think he clarifies the situations pretty well. In his point of view -

Penn continues on with the interview saying the death threats he receives are from mentally ill people, who may also happen to be
religious.

He said “And all of a sudden it came to me that we weren’t really talking about religion at all. We were talking about mentally ill people we happen to label in a certain way. And the number are so, so, so small…yeah, once in a while the police are called on someone who’s written something that crosses a line, and that’s sad – and that person could just as easily be an atheist, or anything. You can talk all you want about the violent imagery of religion – but it’s not the violent imagery of religion that’s making people send out death threats. It’s a mental illness."

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Response to pinto (Reply #4)

Sun May 25, 2014, 01:18 PM

6. Perhaps the OP

will recall those comments the next time he dredges up a story about exorcism or the murder of a child by a psychatrically ill parent.

But I doubt it.

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Response to okasha (Reply #6)

Sun May 25, 2014, 01:26 PM

7. How to distinguish that though? I find it odd, I've known people who seem perfectly normal...

 

except when it comes to challenging their religious beliefs, then they fly off the handle. Are they all mentally ill? If so, that's a significant fraction of religious people, not sure how many, but not a miniscule amount.

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Response to Humanist_Activist (Reply #7)

Sun May 25, 2014, 02:14 PM

9. That's what psychatrists are for.

Anger does not equal schizophrenia. Even most nonmedics can tell the difference.

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Response to okasha (Reply #9)

Sun May 25, 2014, 02:17 PM

10. Who said anything about schizophrenia? You don't need that to make death threats...

 

or even to carry out violence.

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Response to Humanist_Activist (Reply #10)

Sun May 25, 2014, 05:52 PM

13. You did, at least indirectly.

Or did you mean "telling the difference" between something other than normal anger and psychatric illness?

Frankly, if you "challenge" people face to face with the hostility you show to posters here, you're likely to get the same served up to you.

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Response to okasha (Reply #6)

Sun May 25, 2014, 01:31 PM

8. Perhaps your responses can be more substantial than petty personal attacks.

But I doubt it.

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Response to okasha (Reply #6)

Sun May 25, 2014, 05:41 PM

11. Scape-goating the mentally ill how typical

how very neuro-typical.

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Response to Lordquinton (Reply #11)

Sun May 25, 2014, 05:44 PM

12. How very typically

erroneous and irrelevant your comment is.

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Response to okasha (Reply #12)

Mon May 26, 2014, 08:13 PM

16. No, you are perpetuating a very harmful trend in our culture

and you need to stop. This whole notion of "Oh, they did it because of their illness" is complete BS. People with mental illness are actually far less likely to do commit violent crimes than non mentally ill ( http://depts.washington.edu/mhreport/facts_violence.php ) and are, in fact, far more likely to be on the receiving end of violence.

Claiming that someone committed a crime because of an illness is shameful. You are A)covering for the person who committed a crime. B) further stigmatizing an already shunned group making people who need help less likely to seek it out, or receive it when they do. C) Joining in the camp of people who treat mental illness as a punishment, anti-vaxers, religious fundies, etc, as using people with a disease as props for their cause instead of treating them like people.

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Response to Lordquinton (Reply #16)

Tue May 27, 2014, 05:33 PM

17. See post #12.

[NT

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Response to okasha (Reply #17)

Thu May 29, 2014, 06:07 PM

20. So a no answer to callng you out on harmful behaviour?

No, the facts are that it's usually not the mentally ill that commit violent crimes, but that's inconvenient for you. and not inconvenient in the way you believers use it to admonish atheists (The pope said something good, I guess that's too inconvenient for you to acknowledge) but real inconvenient, like Al Gore inconvenient because it undermines your whole position and you have to go on ad hominins because your position is not only false, but you are actively and, now that I've informed you, intentionally hurting people should you continue to do so.

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Response to Lordquinton (Reply #20)

Thu May 29, 2014, 08:46 PM

21. + Infinity

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Response to okasha (Reply #6)

Mon May 26, 2014, 10:35 AM

14. yes of course whenever religion is involved in indefensible acts

 

excuses are made for why it isn't religion to blame. Just the good stuff, that is what religion is responsible for.

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Response to Warren Stupidity (Reply #14)

Mon May 26, 2014, 03:13 PM

15. +1

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Response to pinto (Reply #4)

Tue May 27, 2014, 11:43 PM

18. And Penn Jillette is qualified to make such diagnoses?

I should think not.

Every year, thousands of not-mentally-ill people commit murder. Violent behavior and expression is not indicative of mental illness, no matter what Penn Jillette thinks.

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Response to Act_of_Reparation (Reply #18)

Wed May 28, 2014, 12:00 AM

19. Good point. It's his point of view, fwiw.

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Response to cleanhippie (Original post)

Sun May 25, 2014, 01:17 PM

5. Gawd will strike him down....

...if the mythical being in the sky existed, but, he doesn't, so Penn has nothing to worry about. After 40 yrs, I think he's safe, but there are religious crazies out there and who knows what they are capable of.

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