Atheists and gays live shorter lives

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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#21  Postby Rachel Bronwyn » Apr 27, 2011 11:45 pm

There will be. The statement is based on associated behaviours.
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#22  Postby paceetrate » Apr 28, 2011 3:41 am

VI The Sixth wrote:
paceetrate wrote:That's like saying there's an argument against fair skin and red hair. You can't have an argument against something that isn't a damn choice. To hell with what the statistics say, and smack the dude on that point alone.


To play devil's advocate here for a bit, many people believe homosexuality is a choice. They then argue why that choice is bad: Health risks, the world would end if we're all gays, not "natural" etc.


So? Their beliefs are demonstrably wrong. To hell with whatever argument they decide to make if what they're basing it on is false.
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#23  Postby Teshi » May 22, 2011 9:10 am

I would freaking love to live on the Amish diet though. They consume carbs and fats like nobody's business.


Is there someone preventing you from taking up both eating more like the Amish and doing more physical activity?
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#24  Postby Calrid » May 22, 2011 9:20 am

I realise the OP is ridiculous but let's say it was true for some weird reason, I say quality over quantity any day. If being boring, and refraining from having fun, or overindulging, and be sanctimonious about others makes you live longer, then one has to ask is the price too much for a few more years?

Basically though you can say Republicans live longer than Democrats if you want or that liberals live shorter lives than conservatives, it has all the rigour of saying atheists live shorter lives. Even if they did they would be much more fun anyway so who gives a damn. :)
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#25  Postby Laurens » May 22, 2011 9:32 am

If this were true, and we could work out how many years shorter on average atheists and gays lives were, it would probably be proportional to the amount of time Christians waste in church...
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#26  Postby Calrid » May 22, 2011 9:34 am

Laurens wrote:If this were true, and we could work out how many years shorter on average atheists and gays lives were, it would probably be proportional to the amount of time Christians waste in church...


Thus wasting valuable drinking time.

I know what church I want to be in at Christmas, it has pool tables and Sky TV and most importantly a selection of Beers and stuff. Hallowed be thy bar.
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#27  Postby Doubtdispelled » May 22, 2011 9:42 am

It occurs to me that - based on observations when my father-in-law was at death's door and suffering horribly - some believers may actually be afraid to die because of what they fear will happen to them when they get to the other side. Thus they may cling so tenaciously to a life that, like his, had become unbearable. He was a lapsed catholic who, while he wasn't a really bad person, believed he had broken many of the rules, and he actually said to one of his daughters that he was scared because of this. :(
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#28  Postby my_wan » May 22, 2011 9:54 am

Still looking but found this:
http://eurpub.oxfordjournals.org/content/17/1/104.full
Results: Controlling for a large array of socio-demographic characteristics, while no religiosity gradient was found in reported chronic morbidity, religious persons generally report worse health than secular persons on the other measures.
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#29  Postby Zwaarddijk » May 22, 2011 9:56 am

Laurens wrote:If this were true, and we could work out how many years shorter on average atheists and gays lives were, it would probably be proportional to the amount of time Christians waste in church...


There's research that indicates that people who spend time in communal prayer are more willing to contribute to charity. (The research specifically compared Jewish males and females - Jewish males are required by halakha to pray daily, and if possible to do so communally, whereas women are not. Turns out Jewish females (a reasonably good control group) from the same, highly-religious communities are less eager to contribute to charity. Females in movements where women are supposed to pray as well are, however, as willing as the males to contribute, and religious males that cannot participate in communal prayer are less eager to contribute.) So, altho' this of course doesn't contribute to personal economical success or such, it may have a social effect, and does probably alter some things in the neural network that the brain is made up of - changes that may be beneficial for a community.
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#30  Postby Fallible » May 22, 2011 10:03 am

And following on from that, could it not be the case that all the pressure on, and haranguing of, homosexuals and atheists to change leads to increased stress levels which leads to earlier deaths?
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#31  Postby Calrid » May 22, 2011 10:14 am

Fallible wrote:And following on from that, could it not be the case that all the pressure on, and haranguing of, homosexuals and atheists to change leads to increased stress levels which leads to earlier deaths?


Haha which part of the UK do you come from? Where I live religious people are the minority, we certainly aren't oppressed by them, if anything its the other way around. Although frankly I don't see any real oppression.

Homosexuals sure I can see that. But since only 49% in this country believe in any god at all, you're not going to find any sort of oppression.
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#32  Postby Fallible » May 22, 2011 10:17 am

Liverpool. You can't move without tripping over a Catholic church. I was not speaking exclusively about the UK though. I think atheists have a much harder time of it in many other countries. However I do agree that there is more pressure on homosexuals in the UK, and there is also the stress of having to decide whether to 'come out' and the problems with either choosing to do so or not.
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#33  Postby my_wan » May 22, 2011 10:18 am

Doubtdispelled wrote:It occurs to me that - based on observations when my father-in-law was at death's door and suffering horribly - some believers may actually be afraid to die because of what they fear will happen to them when they get to the other side. Thus they may cling so tenaciously to a life that, like his, had become unbearable. He was a lapsed catholic who, while he wasn't a really bad person, believed he had broken many of the rules, and he actually said to one of his daughters that he was scared because of this. :(

The studies tend to indicate that neither the atheist or the religious are significantly afraid of death. It is those who waffle in the middle that fear death the most. In fact many of the claims about atheist are often based on seeing variations between religious wafflers and highly religious, and they merely assume the graph extends down into the secure atheist. Yet this has been demonstrated to not be the case in many examples, such as the fear of death issue for one.
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#34  Postby Doubtdispelled » May 27, 2011 11:23 am

my_wan wrote:
Doubtdispelled wrote:It occurs to me that - based on observations when my father-in-law was at death's door and suffering horribly - some believers may actually be afraid to die because of what they fear will happen to them when they get to the other side. Thus they may cling so tenaciously to a life that, like his, had become unbearable. He was a lapsed catholic who, while he wasn't a really bad person, believed he had broken many of the rules, and he actually said to one of his daughters that he was scared because of this. :(

The studies tend to indicate that neither the atheist or the religious are significantly afraid of death. It is those who waffle in the middle that fear death the most. In fact many of the claims about atheist are often based on seeing variations between religious wafflers and highly religious, and they merely assume the graph extends down into the secure atheist. Yet this has been demonstrated to not be the case in many examples, such as the fear of death issue for one.

That's interesting, MW. I wonder why that would be? The bolded bit, I mean.
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#35  Postby Calilasseia » May 27, 2011 11:58 am

Well in the case of the USA, atheists and gays are being constantly bombarded by hate propaganda. We have a thread devoted to the hate propaganda being deployed against atheists in the Nontheism section, and I've provided a couple of seriously nasty examples. If you're subject to the stress of knowing that the people around you are so filled with visceral hatred of you, simply because of what you are, that will have an impact upon your health. I for one would not like to try living openly as an atheist in Georgia, for example, because I know for a fact that in some parts at least, I'd be likely to wind up dead in a ditch with bits of me hacked off with an axe. Yes, the hatred is that serious, that intense, and that nasty. And at the risk of Godwinning the thread, being an atheist in Georgia gives you a taste of what it must have been like to be Jewish in late 1930s Germany. Indeed, it's not unreasonable to ask the question of when the Christofascists are going to hold their own version of the Wannsee Conference, in the light of the suppuratingly vicious eructations of people like Tom Willis, or the explicit statements by creepy Christofascist groups such as the Dominionists, who have openly and publicly declared that if they gain power in the USA, they're going to round up gay people and murder them en masse. In the case of atheists, Tom Willis has openly advocated throwing them into concentration camps. You don't have to take my word for it, you can hop over to the relevant thread in Nontheism and download his screeds - I've provided links for the purpose.

When you're surrounded by that sort of hatred, it's going to result in you producing a lot of cortisone.
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#36  Postby DoctorE » May 27, 2011 12:00 pm

... Us atheists will die first :)
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jwQER2AP2p8[/youtube]
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#37  Postby Rome Existed » May 27, 2011 12:48 pm

So why do the more secular/atheist countries appear near the top of life expectancy charts?
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#38  Postby Shrunk » May 27, 2011 1:15 pm

Rome Existed wrote:So why do the more secular/atheist countries appear near the top of life expectancy charts?


It's complicated, isn't it? We've discussed that (moronic) video before. As I've mentioned, the most robustly supported evidence for the health benefits of faith is that regular attendance at at religious ceremonies predicts a longer lifespan. Religious belief on it's own does little to nothing. Now, it would be interesting to see what would happen if that was compared to a secular version of "church." Say, if groups of people with similar interests and outlooks got together every Sunday, listened to relaxing music and a lecture on moral or philosophical issues, would stick around afterwards to share coffee or organize charitable events, etc. I wonder if people doing that would experience the same benefits that going to church seems to provide.

Even if church attendance produces health benefits, that is not inconsistent with a secular society as a whole having better indicators of health. In the same way, rich people with high cholesterol will likely be healthier than impoverished people with normal cholesterol, but lower cholesterol can still predict better health.
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#39  Postby kiore » May 27, 2011 1:48 pm

Picking a single indicator and correlating it to group rather than individual life expectancy is problematic at the least.
In his work on epidemiology that arose from the White Hall Studies wiki article here Michael Marmot author of the Status Syndrome identified social gradient as a powerful predictor of life expectancy. abstract here.
Some of the predictors to group (rather than individual) life expectancy were noted to be educational level and social position (status) within society, people with post graduate degrees live longer than those with graduate degrees who live longer than under graduates etc, and senior managers having a longer life expectancy than middle managers and so on. Some of the more astounding links noted were that hollywood actors who had won Oscars (as a group) lived significantly longer than those just nominated, the degree of difference was similar to the life expectancy difference between smokers and non-smokers, so a significant difference indeed. These markers, Degree, Oscar etc seem to have no intrinsic value to group life expectancy, but rather suggest a number of other factors in process. Picking a single indicator, religion or no religion could be classed in the same category as Oscar no Oscar, perhaps what is being measured is something else. I doubt the accuracy of many of the 'religious people live longer' studies anyway as really indicating what they proclaim to. Likewise the 'gays live less long' studies, what is actually being measured is not at all clear.
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Re: Atheists and gays live shorter lives

#40  Postby Lazar » May 27, 2011 1:56 pm

Rome Existed wrote:So why do the more secular/atheist countries appear near the top of life expectancy charts?


Well there is a potential for an ecological fallacy to be at play here. That is that results at one level of analysis (more or less atheist countries) cannot be extended to another level of analysis (more or less atheist people).
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