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← Brad Pitt: 'I'm probably 20 percent atheist and 80 percent agnostic'

Brad Pitt: 'I'm probably 20 percent atheist and 80 percent agnostic' - Comments

Jiten's Avatar Comment 1 by Jiten

"Religion works," the actor said in a 2007 interview with Parade.
So as not to alienate his ticket buying fans, but condesending nonetheless. It doesn't work for him. But it works for the morons.

Sat, 25 Jul 2009 20:04:00 UTC | #382201

beebhack's Avatar Comment 2 by beebhack

Actors. Is there really nothing they don't know?

Sat, 25 Jul 2009 20:04:00 UTC | #382202

Rodger T's Avatar Comment 3 by Rodger T


Rumour has it ,that he has just been booted out of that 3metre wide bed, again.

Sat, 25 Jul 2009 20:23:00 UTC | #382204

Janus's Avatar Comment 4 by Janus

"20 percent atheist and 80 percent agnostic"

Does that mean he assigns a 40% likelihood to the existence of gods?

Too high!

Sat, 25 Jul 2009 20:24:00 UTC | #382205

Stella's Avatar Comment 5 by Stella

Oh, Brad.

(rolls eyes)

Sat, 25 Jul 2009 20:42:00 UTC | #382209

David A Robertson's Avatar Comment 6 by David A Robertson

Who cares? What a pointless and stupid article....why does the opinion of those who consider themselves 'celebs' matter? Christians do this kind of thing too - citing a celeb who is a Christian as though this somehow gives some extra weight to their claims. Is this what we are reduced to? RD net claiming Brad Pitt as a half baked atheist. I repeat...who cares? Surely not anyone with a functional brain?

Sat, 25 Jul 2009 20:48:00 UTC | #382210

Mark Smith's Avatar Comment 7 by Mark Smith

Is this what we are reduced to?

Are you identifying with 'us' now? Us fundamentalist atheists?

Sat, 25 Jul 2009 20:57:00 UTC | #382212

Alovrin's Avatar Comment 8 by Alovrin

He adds, "I know there's comfort there, a crash pad. It's something to explain the world and tell you there is something bigger than you, and it is going to be all right in the end."

Pretty boy's no good unless he's reading from a script it seems.
Religion is a crash pad? Okay.
It will be all right in the end, cause you'll be fucking dead.

And David piss off

Sat, 25 Jul 2009 21:07:00 UTC | #382213

Paine's Avatar Comment 9 by Paine

20% agnostic and 80% atheist. That probably works out to a 6 on Richard's sliding scale.

I wonder if the media morons will now say "Bard Pitt as fundamentalist as Dawkins!" ?



Sat, 25 Jul 2009 21:58:00 UTC | #382223

SaintStephen's Avatar Comment 10 by SaintStephen

Comment #399639 by Paine on July 25, 2009

I wonder if the media morons will now say "Bard Pitt as fundamentalist as Dawkins!"?

Here is how my personal newspaper headline will read:

Brad Pitt: Yes, Just Another Pretty Face.

Sat, 25 Jul 2009 23:40:00 UTC | #382230

Enlightenme..'s Avatar Comment 11 by Enlightenme..

I have to agree with Mr Robertson on this one, who gives a shit?

Having said that.. Robertson, you have posted countless times on RDNet claiming that the numbers are on the turn in your favour, "as though this somehow gives some extra weight to your claims"..
which nobody here actually believes you believe in any case! (both in terms of the shifting weight of numbers claims, or your professed beliefs)

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 00:31:00 UTC | #382234

ukvillafan's Avatar Comment 12 by ukvillafan

Mr. Robertson, you would be better off mowing your own lawn and clearing your own yard. When you are done, you can come out to play with the big boys on the street.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 00:32:00 UTC | #382235

AfraidToDie's Avatar Comment 13 by AfraidToDie

I do like to know when any celeb has the kajones to claim any part of being atheist. For the same reason I like to see the billboards and hear about the bus campaigns, the more press about people NOT being a believer, the better chance for others to follow and realize they are not some weirdo because they don't believe either. Hats off to Brad!

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 00:55:00 UTC | #382243

NewEnglandBob's Avatar Comment 14 by NewEnglandBob

Is he sure its 20% and 80%?

not 19% and 81% or 21% and 79%?

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 01:03:00 UTC | #382245

anthonzi's Avatar Comment 15 by anthonzi

Well Brad you are 81% less atheist than I am.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 01:59:00 UTC | #382247

debaser71's Avatar Comment 16 by debaser71

Wow. Tough crowd.

I don't understand all the hate.

From my PoV I see a famous actor coming out of the atheist closet (like RD's own campaign wants people to do!) and being ridiculed by atheists for it.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 03:28:00 UTC | #382256

Buckaroo Banzai's Avatar Comment 17 by Buckaroo Banzai

re #13 and #16: agreed.

I don't understand why everyone is upset by Pitt's comments. Anytime someone famous comes out of the closet it is a good thing. I wonder how Angelina thinks though.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 04:32:00 UTC | #382260

HenryFord's Avatar Comment 18 by HenryFord

I'm with 13, 16 and 17.

That a big name celebrity is an atheist (one who either isn't very articulate, or has a lack of understanding of atheism/agnosticism) is uninteresting to us, as we're all pretty clued up on the issue. But that isn't why this article needs to be here.

That a big name celebrity has the balls to "come out" as atheist in America on the other hand is important news. Richard promotes his "out" campaign, so why is there all the hating when somebody - especialy someone famous and influential - does come out?

I thought that a large number of people were after a culture change that made being an atheist socialy acceptable. A culture change is only going to occur when people realise that the people they idolise, the people they respect, the people they work and live with are atheists too.

We need more famous people to come out, and we need more atheists to be supportive of that move. Instead of being a bunch of whinging snobs.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 04:56:00 UTC | #382261

Alovrin's Avatar Comment 19 by Alovrin

Anytime someone famous comes out of the closet it is a good thing.

Any publicity is good publicity eh?
Has Daniel Radcliffe's admission affected ticket sales for HP?

The celebrity effect is overrated.
Its not going to touch the people it needs to.

A Fundie's internal debate will go something like this.
Wow, Jesus or Brad Pitt. mmmmm Jesus wins.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 04:59:00 UTC | #382262

HenryFord's Avatar Comment 20 by HenryFord

The God Delusion didn't exactly win over too many fundies either, so did Richard waste his time writing that?
A fundie's internal debate goes something like this:
Wow, Jesus or Dawkins. mmmmm Jesus wins.


You might acknowledge that whilst the fundies are out of reach, just as with the God Delusion, there are a whole bunch of other people who are within reach, and famous persons coming out will have the influence of making atheism more socialy acceptable.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 05:08:00 UTC | #382265

Jos Gibbons's Avatar Comment 21 by Jos Gibbons

Comment #399626 by David A Robertson
Comment #399650 by Enlightenme..

The significance is not that Brad IS a nonbeliever - which, as you point out, doesn't say anything about whether God if probable - but, rather, the fact that he has SAID he is. The latter is important because this sort of thing would have been impossible only a few years ago. It is classic Out Campaign stuff. (Admittedly Pitt may not have deliberately attempted a contribution to the Out Campaign - indeed, perhaps he doesn't even know of it - but he did come out, like many.) The more this happens, the easier it will be in the future. One way or another, the religious need to come to terms with the irreligiosity of many of their peers.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 06:32:00 UTC | #382273

Pobjoy's Avatar Comment 22 by Pobjoy

I'm with those who think it's a good thing when someone prominent and popular comes out as a non-believer. Nothing will change the minds of the fundamentalists, but having more people publicly proclaim themselves as atheists will hopefully accomplish three things:

1) Make it easier for closet atheists to come out.
2) Make it more acceptable to discuss atheism publicly.
3) Encourage those who are only moderately religious or "spiritual" to think more critically about their beliefs.

His statements about being "80% agnostic" and that "religion works" seem to indicate that Brad Pitt's interest in the issue of atheism vs. religion is not as strong as most of the people following this website. Even so, I am hopeful that the existence of another prominent non-believer will help more in-depth, well-developed arguments against religion to gain acceptance among non-fundamentalists.

The issue of celebrities being idolized is a separate discussion but for good or ill they do have a lot of influence and in this case it could be beneficial from my point of view.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 06:43:00 UTC | #382275

Ansu's Avatar Comment 23 by Ansu

Rule number one: Do not talk about atheism
Rule number two....

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 06:52:00 UTC | #382276

Adrian Bartholomew's Avatar Comment 24 by Adrian Bartholomew

Comment #399689 by Jos Gibbons
I totally agree and I really DO care when celebrities come out and say they are Atheist/Agnostic (wish a few would say Secular Humanist too). Atheist’s have been the butt of so much smearing (hehe, sorry about the pun :-) ) in the media over the years and this HELPS our side. I could name so many movies, TV shows, books, where the bad guy is an atheist and the good guy is religious.

For those that say they don’t care about celebrities coming out I hope they are consistent and also say they don’t care that atheists are portrayed as evil and are generally reviled. The scale of “evil” in the media appears to be, starting at the worst and getting less evil further along the list: Paedophile, Serial Killer, Nazi, Murderer, Atheist, Sceptic, Drug Addict, Thief, and Gambler. Usually if you are an atheist in a movie you get to be one of the others too just to make sure the connection is made (even the otherwise excellent House is a drug addict!). I’ve probably forgotten a lot on that list but frankly I don’t want to be on that list at all.

I can’t help remember how Julia Sweeney said her parents reacted to discovering she was a non-believer; “Not believing in God they could just about take. But an atheist!”

We have to change that perception for the reasons Pobjoy has said above in Comment #399691.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 06:56:00 UTC | #382278

SaintStephen's Avatar Comment 25 by SaintStephen

Lots of good comments here.

However, having been involved in (far too) many political blog debates during the Bush years, I can definitely say that there are many conservative, religious fundamentalists who think the entire Hollywood scene, and most of its players, are simply beneath contempt. So in one sense Pitt's admission is just adding fuel to their existing bias towards Hollywood types.

My (flippant) comment above was a lament regarding his poorly conveyed understanding of atheism, not the fact that he came out of the closet. Indeed, I heartily applaud his gesture.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 07:23:00 UTC | #382279

epeeist's Avatar Comment 26 by epeeist

Comment #399626 by David A Robertson:

Christians do this kind of thing too - citing a celeb who is a Christian as though this somehow gives some extra weight to their claims.
Usually Newton, Michael Faraday or (for the more widely read ones) Georges Lemaitre.

I'm with Jos on this one. It is extremely easy to be a Christian in the States (one might view it as almost mandatory). Actually admitting that you are an atheist, however towards the centre on the Dawkins scale, is considerably harder.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 07:24:00 UTC | #382280

Vaal's Avatar Comment 27 by Vaal

Aw man, just recovering from a night out with Laurie and Phillip :)

Ordinarily, I wouldn't give a fudge about what celebrities believe or otherwise, as they are mostly vacant headed and self-obsessed. However, in the US, where atheism is perceived, and even represented in the press, as some kind of malediction, it is good to get role models such as Brad Pitt declare their atheism, as most young Americans would love to be Brad Pitt. Now, come on Obama, you next :)

Quite often we get theists writing in articles how atheists are glum, unhappy individuals so it is enlightening for them when you point out atheists such as Paul Newman, Alan Alda, and now Brad Pitt.

As Robertson says, this article seems trivial, but in the context of people in the US who genuinely fear losing their jobs if declaring their lack of belief, then maybe it is an important step against religious discrimination, and a significant change in the zeitgeist.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 07:53:00 UTC | #382287

phil rimmer's Avatar Comment 28 by phil rimmer

Comment #399696 by epeeist

I would love to see an analytical treatment of Newton's, Faraday's and other early scientists' faiths. Newton's faith seemed to be heading off into a Unitarian/mystic direction, whilst Faraday's Sandemanianism (spelling?) seems rooted in a quasi-socialist modesty.

Both it seems to me were under the illusion that men generally were honest and scrupulous observers of the world like themselves. (Maybe a little Aspi?) A mountain of apparent "evidence" for God in the form of learned tomes must be acknowledged. Newton, having waded through the mass of "evidence" offered, threw out the trinity and I feel sure that given long enough, would have ended throwing out much else besides. Faraday may well have been entangled with the idea of where does morality (himself scrupulously so) come from. Certainly with neither of them was their faith in any discernible way prescriptive about mechanisms.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 07:54:00 UTC | #382289

Richard Dawkins's Avatar Comment 29 by Richard Dawkins

Oh my, what a carping load of negativity we have here this Sunday morning. Brad Pitt has just come OUT as non-religious, which is exactly the kind of thing we hoped for when we launched the OUT campaign. To quote from the OUT website, (the words are those of Liz Cornwell, who invented the whole OUT campaign, as well as the idea of the 'Video Viignettes', which many people on this site are enjoying at the moment ):

As more and more people join the OUT Campaign, fewer and fewer people will feel intimidated by religion. We can help others understand that atheists come in all shapes, sizes, colours and personalities. We are labourers and professionals. We are mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, sisters, brothers and grandparents. We are human (we are primates) and we are good friends and good citizens. We are good people who have no need to cling to the supernatural.

And the effect will be enormously multiplied if the 'we' includes a world-renowned film star, a role model for millions of young people who are, after all, the future. Brad Pitt's announcement should be cause for rejoicing, not mean-minded carping.


Sun, 26 Jul 2009 09:54:00 UTC | #382300

Peacebeuponme's Avatar Comment 30 by Peacebeuponme

David Robertson

Who cares? What a pointless and stupid article....
Damn, I find myself having to agree with this.

It is extremely easy to be a Christian in the States (one might view it as almost mandatory). Actually admitting that you are an atheist, however towards the centre on the Dawkins scale, is considerably harder.
That's why articles like the one Richard got that Marshall chap to write are great to put up here.

A hollywood celebrity giving a reporter some half-thought out worldview on the other hand adds precisely fuck-all.

That goes for Pitt's agnosticism as much as Ciccone's Kabbalah and Cruise's Scientology.

Sun, 26 Jul 2009 09:57:00 UTC | #382301