James Lee took hostages at the Maryland headquarters of the Discovery Channel, made some demands, and was shot dead by police. He was also a human trafficker. According to his MySpace page, he was also an atheist.
Some theists have been happy to draw a connection from his atheism and his “Darwinism” to his terrorist act. P.Z. Myers shot back with some contrasts between this atheist terrorist and some religious terrorists.
Alonzo Fyfe would like us to imagine what would have happened if James Lee had been a Christian or a Muslim demanding that the Discovery Channel air more shows favorable to creationism. It’s a pretty safe bet that many atheist blogs would have written something to the tone of “See how evil religion is, that it is responsible for stuff like this!”
Fyfe reminds us:
As atheism becomes more and more common, more and more acts such as this will be put in atheist terms and fewer will be put into religious terms… If [a] society is substantially religious, then these type of people will wrap their acts in religious terms. If their society is mostly atheist, they will wrap their acts in atheist terms.
If it is bigoted to generalize about the evils of Darwinism because someone does something evil while citing Darwinian reasons, then it is bigoted to generalize about the evils of religion because someone does something evil while citing religious reasons.