The Enemy of Your Enemy Isn’t Your Friend

I’ve noticed a trend among some atheists on social media in which they’re aligning themselves with far right (mostly christian) conservatives because they happen to overlap politically. I noticed this during the U.S. presidential campaign and see that it hasn’t abated much since.

I understand this.

Atheism, while mostly associated with liberals, is nothing more than the lack of belief in a god, and everything else is up for grabs. That’s why people say getting atheists together on anything other than that lack of belief in a god is like herding cats.

However, as much as I understand it, I’m also baffled by it because while I understand that the conservative atheist and the conservative christian can come together in their hatred of the left or Social Justice Warriors or what have you, I doubt they’re going to agree when it comes to teaching creationism in science class or teacher-led prayer — prayer to Jesus, of course, — in public school. And if you look at how the far right christians are positioned in our government — federal, state and local — we’re probably going to be facing these issues sooner rather than later.

So while you’re all free to retweet and ‘like’ those deplorable Pepe-faced, god, country, patriot, MAGA assholes, I don’t want to hear you crying when your kid comes home from school telling you how the animals on Noah’s ark repopulated the world after the great flood or about the cool guy with the long, blond hair with holes in his hands who does magic tricks that the teacher told them they have to pray to every day before class.

I don’t want to hear it.

Because these enemies of your enemies who are your friends now won’t be when you tell them “No, I’m sorry, you can’t bring religion into our secular government,” and “No, I’m sorry, you can’t institute prayer in public schools,” and “No, I’m sorry, you don’t get a religious exemption for your kid dying because you decided to pray instead of taking them to the doctor,” and “No, I’m sorry, but you’re just going to have to keep your unprovable fairytale bullshit to yourself, thank you very much.”

And trust me, if these people every truly gain control, you’re going to find out pretty quickly who their enemy is, and your mutual hatred of whatever the fuck it was isn’t going to save your ass.


  • Mark P

    What the hell? People were doing that?

  • Wait… You’re saying the animals on Noah’s ark didn’t repopulate this world? Not even those two male lions that you see depicted in some art about Noah? 😀

    • rg57

      I think they must have had fun trying. Then I remember what a feline’s penis is like.

  • Ten Bears

    The enemy of your enemy is never your friend.

    Indeed, damned few “friends” are your friend.

  • rg57

    Your mistake here is in assuming that in a two-party system bought and sold by whoever can afford the billions, it’s possible that you have “friends”. You don’t.

    It was the Democrats and Bill Clinton who gave you RFRA, because they thought it was just wrong that the noble savage (yes, the Democrats are racist too) couldn’t get high for his religion, and if he couldn’t get high for that, then maybe they (and they’re all religious, even now) would have their religion constrained by some OTHER otherwise legal, non-targeted law, in some unforeseen way. So they gave us RFRA, which Republicans adopted into state RFRAs, and the Supreme Court used to give us Hobby Lobby and related legal cancer.

    The free exercise clause of the First Amendment wasn’t crazy enough for the Democrats. And now we’re paying the price.

    I mean good grief, we’re supposed to get all googly-eyed because Obama (earlier in his presidency, not so much later) deigned to recognize that atheists actually exist?

    You have no friends. The enemy of your enemy just the same enemy with tiny hands or a pantsuit.

    It’s the same thing I tell gay people. The sick, sad news is that you have to work on BOTH parties because if you only side for (or against) one of them, the very best outcome you can hope for is a few years of slight progress (from the party that takes you for granted) followed by a few years of moving backward (from the party that sees you as the enemy of all that is good).

    And we’re in a time now where it looks very likely to me that it’s going to be President Pence. With the strength of the religious right within the GOP, he is probably going to have an easy time. If atheists had been more active within the alt-right, perhaps helping to stifle the Cruz and Kasich candidacies, and untethered Trump from the religious nuts, and got more non-religious people into office under the GOP banner, then a Pence administration might then be similarly stifled by his own Congress. That’s not going to happen now.

    • Mark Landes

      “If atheists had been more active within the alt-right, perhaps helping to stifle the Cruz and Kasich candidacies, and untethered Trump from the religious nuts, and got more non-religious people into office under the GOP banner, then a Pence administration might then be similarly stifled by his own Congress.”

      How little you actually understand US politics for the passed 30-40 years. Trump was always going to get the religious nuts to follow him because they deny truth and reality, just like he does. The credulous were always going to vote for Trump because they bought his lies. I would have rather had Kasich as President as at least he is rational and can be reasoned with, something Cruz, Trump and Pence are unable to do.

      There are Log Cabin Republicans who have been for YEARS trying to work within the Republican party and have have only gotten to the point that they are allowed to attend the RNC and other some religious right conventions. I am a gay man and have follow the Log Cabin Republicans for several years since I use to be republican.

      US Politics is and has ALWAYS been a two party system since the first political parties under John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. I agree that this is unfortunate but when you only need a majority of a vote to pass laws in not only the Federal government but in most state governments that is what you are going to get. This is not like parliament in the UK or Australia.

      Plus it is not the atheist’s responsibility to “infiltrate” the alt-right to provide rationality. Those people have already removed themselves from rational arguments. I agree with the author I am disappointed that some atheist and skeptical leaders appear to advance the idea that SJW and identity politics killed the left. Especially when biggest proponents of identity politics for 30-40 years is the Religious Right and religious in general. If you don’t follow their god, believe the way they do and vote for their candidates then you are evil and bringing god’s destruction upon this country.

      • I don’t think it’s possible to un-tether the religious right from the republican party or Donnie Trump for that matter, he provides them with a right hand that will sign any batshit crazy policy or law they can get in front of him. He’s the worst of all possible presidents because it’s obvious he has no moral center. Remember when he was just starting as a candidate and some people actually thought he’d be a liberal?? It happened because he was AB testing the American public, saying whatever rhetoric on any issue he could until he found what resonated and he stuck with what resonated with the most number of likely voters. He appealed to the idiot masses and it worked.

  • Michael Neville

    “The enemy of my enemy is my enemy’s enemy, no more, no less.” #29 of Seventy Maxims of Maximally Effective Mercenaries

  • Jokuvaan

    There is a war coming and the other side kills atheists for being atheists.