On December 20, 2015, you gave a 25 minute speech at the beginning of the Reason this Season display in the Nebraska Capitol Building. This speech was so filled with mischaracterization and lies against Christians that someone must give a proper response to it, especially since you claim to be knowledgeable of the religion that you attacked and the over one billion people you maligned who claim to be Christian. It is profound and remarkable that you hardly said anything in support of reason and rationalism, but rather attacked the Christian religion and Christians in general during your speech. It appears that you really are not an atheist or a freethinker, but rather an anti-Christian. It seems then, that atheism offers so little that it is almost entirely exhausted by criticizing theistic religions.
Christians cannot and will not keep their religion within the confines of their own homes. To force them to do so would be the same as making them deny their faith. The state cannot define a person’s faith for him. Proselytization should be allowed, since it is a part of a person’s religion. Christians aren’t forcing others to accept their beliefs. In the Gospel of Luke, chapter 9, verses 52-56 we read about how Jesus rebukes His disciples for asking Him to destroy a village of unbelieving people who rejected their message.
I suggest that in similar public appearances you dress more formally. Even the poor in Victorian England strived to be respectable, and cleanly, and made an effort to have at least one set of nice clothes that they could wear to more formal gatherings.
You also managed to get basic facts wrong, and should have known better, since you claimed to have researched the things he was talking about. You claim that that the “white-oriented” people just looked on as Jesus Christ suffered on His way to Golgotha, while He was carrying His cross. Jesus was crucified by the Pharisees because He claimed to be the Son of God, not because of His skin color. Jesus was also a rabbi just like the Pharisees. You even got basic anthropology wrong, because you should know that people in the Middle East aren’t exactly of white complexion. It is also highly questionable as to where you got the idea that Simon of Cyrene, the man who helped Jesus carry His cross was black.
It is all the more surprising that you, an African American would support evolutionary theory and claim that men came from monkeys. This is because historically according to evolutionary theories, the earliest forms of humans come from Africa (the out of Africa theory), meaning that other races would be more developed compared to black people. For example, because of evolutionary ideas about the origin of man, Ota Benga, a man from Congo was put on exhibit in the Bronx zoo as a specimen of early human evolution. I don’t think you would ever savor such an idea.
Many scientific facts contradict human evolution. For example, there are simply not enough hominid remains to bear out the idea that humans were evolving for millions of years. The fossil Lucy has been shown to be a chimpanzee. Modern humans, Neanderthals and Denisovans have also been shown to have interbred, with a large portion of their genomes in common (humans having received 5% of their genome from Denisova). Fossils exist which show both human and Neanderthal characteristics. In fact, the skull capacity of Neanderthal is larger than that of modern human.
You also ridiculed the theologians from the Middle Ages because they argued about how many angels could fit onto the head of a pin. If you would have done your homework properly, you would have known that this was only a mock-question for practicing how to debate, sort of like having schoolchildren learn the multiplication table so that they can use it later in life during their careers as adults.
However, one of your most heinous statements that you said during your speech was that Christian “preachers are the biggest liars”, and that “Christians are notorious liars”. What would Americans think if a white male politician said that African Americans, or women, or Muslims were notorious liars? They’d be branded as racist pigs and their careers would be damaged beyond repair. Psychological analysis shows that every person makes untruthful comments at least a couple dozen times a day. Therefore you cannot just single out Christians calling them liars en masse.
Your attack on the Christian Trinity is also a straw man. Christianity states that there is one God (James 2:19). But at the same time, God is three persons and one substance. You could have easily read about this in any number of theology books, or in the Nicene or Athanasian Creed. Jesus commands His disciples to baptize people in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19). One name, three persons, one Trinity. God is infinite, and as such, we cannot even attempt to grasp God, as finite creatures. Your error in attacking the Trinity is that you anthropomorphizes God, Who is not human. Jesus Christ was fully man and fully God, that is why He as a man was separated from the Father, when He cried out as to why the Father had forsaken Him. Since He was also fully God, that is why death had no power over Him when He died, but since He committed His spirit to the Father of life, that is where He went right after His death.
As an atheist, you deny the existence of God whom you have not seen with your own eyes, despite the very fact that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, one with the Father walked on this earth among men, which is all the proof that atheists demand for the existence of God. On the same note we can deny the existence of atoms since we have not [nor even cannot] seen them with our own eyes.
You also decry God justly punishing sinful people for rebelling against Him, killing babies, yet you are pro-abortion, and uphold the wholesale murder of millions of unborn babies. This is just sheer hypocrisy at its worst. If you believe that God does not exist, then ultimately there are no values, no morals, no laws, no absolute truth, and death is just a neutral factor in the grand scheme of life.
You also brought up an example of a political science assistant at Wheaton College, a Christian university. He was suspended for supposedly showing solidarity with oppressed Muslims, and that he claimed that Allah, the god of Islam was the same as the God of the Bible. You should know very well, that if somebody wishes to work at a Christian institution, he is very likely obligated to ascribe to a statement of faith. Only Roman Catholics are allowed to work within the Vatican, for example. This is only common sense and completely acceptable. If you do not believe the same thing that others do in the same church that you go to, then you are perfectly free to go elsewhere where people believe the same thing that you do? You should not attempt to define the religion of the people at Wheaton College for them. We must separate the state from the church!
It is a shame that you gave such a speech in a public place such as the Nebraska State Capitol Building, and therefore you owe a public apology to all Christians that you smeared as being liars.
I do hope that you will consider these things.
Dr. Matthew Cserhati