From: "H**** M*******" 
To: "Darwin Bedford" <Darwin@atheists.net>
Subject: Re: removed naked pic from Internet
Date: Tue, 31 Dec 2002 10:12:51 -0800

Hi Dave,
 
Thanks for the email and for sharing the extracts from other
people.  I never felt you were stubborn.
 
By the way, that fifth message down displays what I have
found with the religious right.  A syrupy sweet exterior but
it is steely hard, intolerant and unloving on the inside. 
 
There's a sign that appears at the local school every Sunday.  A
group of people is obviously using school property to hold
religious services.  I don't know the people so I guess it's not
an entirely fair comment but their sign reads "Sunshine Coast
Baptist Church". I've wanted to write on it "If you aren't with us,
you'll rot in hell" for that's their real message.
 
Having said that, I'm not sure that I can go fully over into the
athiest camp.  I'd call myself more of an agnostic.  I think there
is the possibility of a god or gods that are not morally directive.
 
I sure find it absurd when I hear people say stuff like "I got
through that math test (or whatever) with god's help."   Haven't
they read the news that 30,000 kids starve to death every
day in the developing world.  Guess god was distracted with all
of our rich concerns and forgot about those kids???
 
H*****
----- Original Message -----
From: Darwin Bedford
To: Darwin Bedford
Sent: Tuesday, December 31, 2002 12:51 AM
Subject: removed naked pic from Internet


Hi everyone,

Just a note to inform you that I have removed my infamous naked picture
from my Web site which I posted in February, 1996.  It appears that nudity
is a controversial issue in its own right and that we don't only cover our
privates due to religious teachings of the past or out of fear of reprisal
from gods.

Besides my family, friends and work associates telling me that it is
detrimental to my cause, here are some extracts of what people wrote to me
about it.


***************************

You speak of how building your own values and integrity is the job of an
individual. Well, I'm sorry sir but I don't think you have built your own
integrity. You post photos of yourself nude online and use profane language
when referring to Jesus and God. Do you have no dignity? Anyone with moral
values, religious or not, would not present such atrocities to an open
audience. I came across your website while doing a school research project
on religion in schools. I'm a firm supporter of school prayer and teaching
Christianity in schools because it gives people something true in this
world to believe in, and teaches moral values that you sir, don't have.

***************************

Now to my suggestions, I believe more people would listen to you and your
ideas if you were a bit more casual. I refer to your posting a nude picture
of yourself, calling yourself an atheist's Messiah and putting in a link
titled "How I kill people."

***************************

I m an African asheist who very recently moved to l live in Canada. I was
delighted to find yr page this night. I liked yr articles and I think they
help me overhaul and service my atheism
But yr nude picture a little embarssed and disappointed(?) me. Yr
credibility suddenly dropped some and according to Hilda who wrote the best
message on yr nuditiy yr justifying it was  even more damaging to yr reasoning.
I don't want to sound traditional but I don't want to spoil a starting
relation. Or is it not?
Oh I forgot that grin. I am about yr age and you
must have been a very teasing person and many
did not like yr stubborn ways

***************************

But, if you don't mind some hopefully "constructive" criticism here, there
is still a straining or stretching of your credibility by using a 25 year
old nude photo of yourself sporting a full blown erection and insisting it
is "not juvenile stunt". The basis for this photo, you say, is that as
with the Doukhobors, you associate it with a display of the "rejection of
wealth and status." Well, this is where you blow it (excuse the
expression). Assuming that you want to attract intelligent and discerning
readers, they will know right away that this is a specious argument for
displaying this type of photo. Never have we seen such public photos of
Doukhobors. They took of their clothes and paraded down the streets "au
natural" as a means of attracting attention to their protest, which, if I
remember correctly, was against the government forcing their kids to go to
public schools.

***************************

And how the fuÁk is a nude picture of you gonna convince me that Gods a
fraud. You are one crazed, sick bastard. I hope you live to see the time
when Jesus cames back to take over the world after the Antichrist. Then all
wird freaks like you will have their heads lopped off.
Maybe you lost those 31 domain names because you post nude pics of yourself
on your sites.

***************************

Lastly, one note of friendly concern. Your site depicts exceptional
insight and humor and is a great boon to atheism. I might suggest that the
picture of you naked, although not offensive to me, does raise a possible
flag in visitors minds about the ethics and morals of the atheism you are
attempting to convey. It seems to me to be out of place here. I would
suggest the place for this would be on a separate site, if necessary at all.
I think it detracts strongly from the other gifted offerings on your site.
How many religious sites have pictures of their pastors and preachers naked?

***************************

I wonder, who your intended audience is. If it includes religious folks,
whom you want to show the light of reason wrapped in humor and rational
thought, then your naked picture almost certnainly will drive them to turn
off the "light" by leaving the website and dismiss your ideas as deviant
and degenerate.

****************************


See, I'm not stubborn after all.

D. Bedford
www.atheists.net