Signing Christian.
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30-08-2010, 11:04 PM (This post was last modified: 31-08-2010 12:03 AM by Cetaceaphile.)
Signing Christian.
This is something that I've been a bit perplexed by. I'm not sure if this is localized to to UK or not, but basically if a person has to fill in a form, they will put "Christian" even if they are not.

I've met very few Religious. Actually in my time through school there was 6 in my class, some girls in my final year of high school, all Muslim. (though I will admit that one of the high school classes was muslim only and 1 more had a small group of christians) And I wonder why people would sign this.

I've even seen my best friend do it. My best friend who regularly calls christians "Ignoramus" signed his religion as Christian when he went for a job interview. I wondered if maybe it is because Atheism is only mentioned in the media in quite complex documentaries and they are mostly ignored by the working class. It would make sense that somebody with no religion who hasn't got a name for "no religion" in their vocal would sign the religion of the BBC.

Thoughts?

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31-08-2010, 12:01 AM
 
RE: Signing Christian.
I've never seen that question on a job application in the U.S. I wouldn't answer it because I think it's personal and none of their business. It wouldn't affect how I did my job. I mean, unless it was like a job application for a priest or something...

People are probably afraid if they mark anything other than what goes along with the majority, that they will be disregarded immediately as if they'd answered the question, "If a customer gets in your face, what do you do?" with "Scream back at them."
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31-08-2010, 05:35 AM
 
RE: Signing Christian.
I have an idea why this is. Though I remind everyone that it is simply an idea.

It's safe.

In your region of the world, and in mine, I would guess that the dominant religion is Christianity.

I think it's an attempt on people's part to blend in. Kind of a social camouflage. After all, when employers are allowed to ask your religion (they aren't in the States unless you're filing for a religious position), it becomes very easy for them to discriminate against you.

"Atheist? We don't want your kind here."..."Muslim? didn't they attack some buildings in the States? Don't hire them." (These are imagined comments, not my world views.)

When you review applications in private, and the applicant is miles away, or even in the next room it becomes easy to judge them off of your own preconceived notions. Because you can't prove a religion by looking at someone's skin color or the shape of their bodies, "Christian" becomes the safe default position.

Not that Christianity has ever been safe or non-discriminatory...
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31-08-2010, 08:15 AM
RE: Signing Christian.
(31-08-2010 05:35 AM)Soldieringon Wrote:  I think it's an attempt on people's part to blend in. Kind of a social camouflage. After all, when employers are allowed to ask your religion (they aren't in the States unless you're filing for a religious position), it becomes very easy for them to discriminate against you.

This.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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31-08-2010, 02:03 PM
RE: Signing Christian.
I've wondered about this too, because people put these kinds of replies on censuses too, which makes many fairly secular nations seem more religious than they actually are.
However, I think another possible answer to this is that people may just not really think about it that much. My boyfriend has met many guys in the army who were raised in religious households, and identify themselves with a religion, yet they know nothing about their religion. They call themselves Catholic or Christian, or whatever, but they haven't ever picked up the Bible, nor do they go to church. But they still get married in a church with religious ceremonies, celebrate Christian holidays, etc. So, naturally, these kinds of people are going to put down whatever religion their parents are on a census.

"Remember, my friend, that knowledge is stronger than memory, and we should not trust the weaker." - Dr. Van Helsing, Dracula
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31-08-2010, 07:14 PM
RE: Signing Christian.
In Canada it is illegal for a company to ask your religion on an application form. I believe the same is true in the United States.
What you have is an application that was originally designed to discriminate. It needs to be made illegal in all countries.

When I find myself in times of trouble, Richard Dawkins comes to me, speaking words of reason, now I see, now I see.
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31-08-2010, 07:55 PM
 
RE: Signing Christian.
I believe in the US military, you still have to declare your religion (offered the choice among jew, catholic, protestant, or muslim). I certainly did many years ago. Given the choices I had - atheist wasn't among them - I chose the default: what I was raised as. I now enjoy declaring that I'm a Laplacian, which only a small number of folks would recognize as a joke. Not wishing to offend me, no one ever asks what a Laplacian is, assuming it's some sort of obscure religious sect!
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01-09-2010, 05:38 AM
 
RE: Signing Christian.
(31-08-2010 07:55 PM)2buckchuck Wrote:  I believe in the US military, you still have to declare your religion (offered the choice among jew, catholic, protestant, or muslim). I certainly did many years ago. Given the choices I had - atheist wasn't among them - I chose the default: what I was raised as. I now enjoy declaring that I'm a Laplacian, which only a small number of folks would recognize as a joke. Not wishing to offend me, no one ever asks what a Laplacian is, assuming it's some sort of obscure religious sect!

Chuck, I believe you and I have spoken before.

I'm at the Portable Atheist

And, for the record, you do still have to declare your religion, but it is for burial purposes and funeral services. They let me be an atheist.
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01-09-2010, 08:53 AM
 
RE: Signing Christian.
Aha! Indeed, we have. Well met, Soldier!!

I wonder what your atheist's gravestone would look like, who would conduct the services, and how those services might proceed.

It's also my understanding that you've been 'encouraged' to attend openly religious events by your chain of command.
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01-09-2010, 03:02 PM
 
RE: Signing Christian.
(01-09-2010 08:53 AM)2buckchuck Wrote:  Aha! Indeed, we have. Well met, Soldier!!

I wonder what your atheist's gravestone would look like, who would conduct the services, and how those services might proceed.

It's also my understanding that you've been 'encouraged' to attend openly religious events by your chain of command.

You are correct sir, I have been encouraged to attend openly religious events.

However, in the defense of the military, we all rotate out of Korea rather quickly in the big scheme of things and the people that 'encouraged' those things have all moved on to different duty stations. It was my unfortunate 'luck' to be here as a non believer when all the believers seemed to congregate here at the same time.

I felt uncomfortable, but never threatened.

As far as my tombstone? I hope to be cremated, i don't want to take up valuable real estate for ever (I think that you could use that land to feed the hungry or clothe the needy.) But if I were to have a piece of granite to mark me I would like it do say:

"A dislike or distrust of superstition and the supernatural need not mean there is a deafness to the marvelous and the mysterious..."

That's from Hitchens, in a forward found in the Portable Atheist.

As far as who would conduct the services and how they would proceed? no interest. I won't be there. Smile
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