It seems an equally innocuous claim, Azd. An uncontroversial statement here at WWGHA.
Really? News to me, then. I had thought that characterizing vast swaths of people as harmful on the whole, due to a particular aspect of their personalities or belief systems, would be more controversial with more people.
As an analogy: Smoking is harmful. It does not follow that smokers, as people, are harmful, even though they are often causing harm while smoking. And saying that "the majority of smokers are harmful to society" is making a statement about them as people, not about their smoking. A great way to dehumanize them, that.
Do you agree that teaching gullible children that the world is 10,000 years old harms them? Do you agree that teaching significant numbers of children that the world is 10,000 years old harms society?
I hope you do.
Sure. Religion is harmful. I thought we were discussing the other
If so, look at the numbers; 40% of US adults believe that the world is 10,000 years old.
(I assume that these 40% are religious. I also assume that they teach their children their creationist beliefs. Fair enough?).
This may not constitute a majority. Christians constitute about 80% of the population, so it's close. But whatever, it's still a significant proportion. And this is only one example of harm. I'm sure we can all think of many others.
So what you're saying is that because of this instance (and other instances) of harm, society would be better off if these people were to cease to exist.
Well, that can be accomplished, Gnu. It's been done before. I believe jaybwell alluded to such a thing already.
But to answer your point directly, so what? Yes, this is harmful. Yes, there are other instances of harm. How does one go about evaluating whether this makes a person more harmful to society than not? At what point does their existence become a net negative? Sure, there are people like that. But you're saying that something close to half the American population is harming society on the whole. Dude, that is