This site is not maintained. Click here for the new website of Richard Dawkins.

Comment

← Imagine No Religion

Goldy's Avatar Jump to comment 9 by Goldy

That's the point, isn't it? You can't describe a child as anything but a child. When a person understands what religion means and either rejects it or embraces it, that's when the name calling can start :-) However, I was a Christian from, well, a month after my birth. Christened in Dec 1969. No matter what i thought, I was C of E, end of story. For some, I'm C of E until my last breath, no matter what. We could go on a case my case basis, but generally, a child is deemed of that religion from when it is born. Ethnic Malays are Muslim by law, no matter what their beliefs (you may recall the recent story of a woman, I believe called Joy, who wanted to change her classification to Christian. This was disallowed, to the cries of Allahu akbar, becasue once a Muslim, always a Muslim. Did anyone ask her if she wanted to be a Muslim at birth?). In some cases, there are a few preliminary priestly mumbles and maybe a spot of mutilation after birth to "welcome" the child to the fold after the actual birth, but generally, there is no choice. I think the child is not really important in the equation other than existing, which is why it has been described as abuse.
Personally, I don't think a child should be labelled anything other than a child. Even if they decide they want to be known as Christian or Muslim or Tea Potters, at a young age they are probably only mouthpieces of indoctrination (see this article http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/24/world/asia/24madrasa.html?ref=world) and don't fully comprehend what it is they are meant to be thinking. Again, the theists arguing here are a good example of this, to me at least. In some cases, te indoctrination is so deep, evidence has to be interpreted with a god in it to make it understandable.
Ideally a case by case basis for description is right, but it doesn't happen that way.

Tue, 24 Jul 2007 16:28:00 UTC | #55204