Australians asked not to list their religion as Jedi


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2016/08/03/australians-asked-not-to-list.html


#2

Eh, I’m in favour of atheists listing themselves as “atheist.”

Otherwise, it’ll screw up the numbers of the actual Jedi.


#3


#4

What religions ARE allowed?


#5

Roger That!


#6

Man, these atheists don’t have respect for any religious traditions…


#7

Sith it is then!


#8

According to Wikipedia, “The 2006 census recorded 58,053 Jedi [in Australia] In the 2011 census, the numbers listing their faith as Jedi had picked up from the 2006 census to 65,000.”

Faith and religion are not the same thing! In my experience it is mostly Christians who get hung up on the concept of faith. It comes off as silly to people who’s religious traditions don’t even involve believing in anything.

As of a few years ago at least, the Universal Life Church in the US was willing to ordain people as Jedi.


#9

because it is making the country seem more religious than it actually is.

Why the hell do they care? According to the US census something like 50% of all Americans report they were in church last Sunday. That’s probably true on Christmas Eve. aside from that, it is making the country seem more religious than it actually is. So?


#10

Of course I’m in favor of the the government not asking questions that are none-of-their-damn-business…


#11

Because religion is politicized and atheists want to diminish its political power. One great argument for doing so is that not all that many people adhere to the religion in the first place.

This is relevant to all kinds of BoingBoing bugbears like the abortion debate, or whether insurance can/should pay for birth control, whether religious groups get to count as charities for tax-exempt status, and more.

Religious groups counterargue using phony baloney statistics, and so atheist activists want to do what they can to get the numbers to swing more their way.


#12

It’s a census. They’re useful. The information “What religion is this person” isn’t going to the government; it’s anonymized and aggregated to figure out how the country is changing.


#13

You misspelled Walmart


#14

I disagree, simply because the First Amendment doesn’t have an exception for statistically popular religions. Apologies if you’re not American, but those are US issues you raise. Here, it doesn’t matter if your church claims 99% of the population or 1%. (At least, on paper.)


#15

It may not be quite as pressing an issue in some countries such as Australia as it is in the US; in other countries, it’s even more pressing, e.g. Uganda or Iran. Dismissing it as just a “US issue” is awfully parochial of you.

And it could happen in Australia too. Religious groups tend to value ideological conformity and are great at motivating their adherents, which means that they tend to exercise political power out of proportion to their numbers.

Edit: The law is not guaranteed protection from tyranny of the majority.


#16

Oh, come on! Like Australia has a census!


#17

a.k.a. “free-thinkers”


#18

Is Agnostic Ranter allowed?


#19

Ha! We should start a religion!


#20

I just don’t see whet is is useful FOR, even in aggregate. Like Boundegar said, it shouldn’t matter to the government whether a religion is 1% or 99% of the populace. All should be equally free to practice their religions as long as they don’t interfere with the rights of others.