1. Religion Is About Morality, Not Creation Myths
It was apt that MSNBCs misnomer about the Catholic view of science concerned creation. Often the origin of the earth and of man plays a central role in the science versus religion debate. There are jokes about cave men riding dinosaurs, deep concerns about our children being exposed to the idea of intelligent design, and disdain thrown upon those who question the almighty power of science. But, frankly, creation, while fascinating, is not the most important aspect of the atheist critique of religion. Morality is. The means by which the earth was made plays an insignificant role in our daily lives. Moral choices, on the other hand, are made every day, and they have long, lingering effects.
2. Religion Is the Foundation of All Morality, Not Merely an Expression of It
The atheist approach to the non-empirical question of “how do we determine right from wrong” tends to be a negative ad campaign listing the horrors done in the name of religion. Whether it is the Inquisition or ISIS, atheists argue that these barbarities stem directly from the intolerance of religious texts and practices. On the surface it can be a persuasive argument, but upon deeper reflection it becomes murky.