Let's begin with a few testimonials about your experiences and firsthand knowledge of the community known as Unitarian Universalism. My experience with them was several years ago. It's kind of a hippie church- the director greeted me while planting some seeds in Birkenstocks-and his wife had cornrow hair, dressed in mountain climbing gear. All faiths were welcome, they said-including those who have no faith, like me. This can hardly be considered "Christian". What I do know is that they have Christian values-charity, good will, and fellowship of man. They are the only all-inclusive "church" that I know of. Homosexuals are welcomed with open arms.
So, does anyone have a UU experience that they'd like to share?
Next-let's discuss atheism. How many violent atheists have you met?
Most of us are progressive, intellectual, curious and mild-mannered. There are even conservative atheists, and they are indeed intellectual, just in a backwards way. I have never, ever met an atheist who was a violent person. There may be some, because there are psychopaths in every walk of life-I'm sure Christians wouldn't like it if we thought that doctor killers were representative of their faith.
Here's a secret: Atheists usually have Christian values.
They just don't think they can be derived only from God. There are volumes of philosophy dating back to the Greeks that establish morality as a human issue. One of the chief complaints that atheists have about Christians is they talk the talk, but don't walk the walk. Many prominent church leaders are combative and hostile and make enemies out of anyone who is not a Judeo-Christian. I am part of a Freethinkers society where pagans, wiccans, atheists, pantheists and the like all get together and fellowship, often at a park. Never will you hear anyone proselytize their beliefs. Like UU, it's an acceptance thing. We like you because you are moral, and that's about the extent of it. If you are a dogmatic dick and start arguing with people, you won't be welcome for very long.
Now, one of PWs commenters thinks that atheists are crazy whackjobs who hate Christians. This is never true. I personally believe that Jesus is just alright with me; I think he was a great philosopher. I do not believe he's the son of God, though. Besides, worshiping Christ is about the last thing he wanted; true, he had acolytes, but they were there to assist him and be witness to his actions.
Let's put a question to him-why would our commenter come to the defense of a church who violates several precepts of Christianity, one whose members sometimes are not Christian? Why would a nutjob pick a UU church to show Christians a lesson? Is that person an atheist when most violence is anathema to nonbelievers?
One more thing. What is the troll policy here? I prefer engagement once the name-calling is done, but if troll feeding is verboten here, I'll drop this immediately.
UPDATE: The Rude Pundit also has experienced the same thing I have at Unitarian gatherings.
UPDATE 2: Kos diarist Elrod finds a KPD news conference that alleges that the shooter wanted to kill "liberals and gays". And, the dude left a four page manifesto on the subject. Manifesto unpublished at this time. So basically we have a hate crime. I won't go so far as to say the man was a Christian-let's just leave it as pyscho-fuckheadedness. Oh, by the way, the diarist is the first person I am aware of that has had firsthand experience of the UU church. He's a member. So far, that is the only unimpeachable source I have seen so far, but I'm sure conservatives have their own narrative, which I suspect will be debunked soon.
UPDATE 3: Now we are getting somewhere. Neighbor says shooter considered himself a "Confederate" and believer in the "Old South". I think we can tell where this is heading and who this clown really was.
UPDATE 4: Look, I'm just trying to bolster my case, thus disproving PW commenter serr8ed's insistence that UU churches are solely Christian. Sara at Orcinus is a Unitarian who knows that a UU person did not do this, and what a Unitarian is and what they are not.
UPDATE 5: Still want to defend the Church, serr8ed? They started a chapter of the ACLU. I think it's safe to say your version of the killings is in shreds.
UPDATE 6: I think that our pal serr8ed won't be back for another beating. This man has no dick.