Kevin Sorbo Has Atheist Friends — And He Wants To Know, Why Are You All So Mad?
Kevin Sorbo wants you to know, he has atheist friends. That’s what he said in a recent Reddit AMA. Of course it was pretty brave of the guy who is infamous for being the God-hating professor in God’s Not Dead to do anything at all on the heavily atheistic Reddit, and though he was accused of dodging questions, the truth is, he answered several about his faith, his thoughts on atheists, and how this affects his Hollywood life.
If you’re not familiar with God’s Not Dead, here’s a quick explanation of why his role in it matters to atheists: he played an ostensibly atheistic professor, though in truth, atheism is, of course, a lack of belief in God (or gods), where Sorbo’s character was merely angry at God, lashing out and attacking anyone who dared suggest God is still alive and moving in our lives today. He opens his class by demanding that his college students agree that God is dead — or, if they refuse, he demands that they prove it.
This is, of course, not very atheistic — atheists don’t think God is dead. They think he never existed. As you may imagine, many atheists (and actually, many religious non-Christians, and even a number of Christians) were pretty unhappy with the portrayal. Now, Reddit isn’t an atheist website, by any means, but there are certainly a large number of outspoken atheists on the site, and it could be expected they’d speak up.
Kevin Sorbo was given questions that might be expected, questions about playing Hercules, and about how his faith affected his career, and about his upcoming movies — but he also received some more pointed and direct questions.
Wouldn’t making good movies with Christian themes be better than making s**t no one can watch unless they’re oblivious to pandering (like God’s Not Dead, Fireproof)?
Hey Kevin, how are you able to deliberately misrepresent all atheists with such gusto in your awful ‘film’ God is not dead? Seriously I watched it and it’s painfully full of outright falsification and bigoted misrepresentations. Wouldn’t it be better to treat the subject with respect and honesty and not just make up a bunch of demonstrably false things and fling them at the wall hoping that they’ll stick?
Why do you need to resort to lying about atheism in order to make your point?
In several cases, questioners wondered if Sorbo was avoiding their questions — but the fact is, he answered quite a few questions about God’s Not Dead and about his feelings about atheists and Christianity. Some of his major points follow:
- Kevin Sorbo has atheist friends. Presumably that means he can’t have any anti-atheist prejudices.
- He does wonder, though, why all the atheists are so mad all the time.
- He wonders why atheists are offended by Nativity scenes.
- He thinks atheists should also be angry at Santa and the Easter Bunny, since they’re so mad at God.
- Atheists are jealous because God’s Not Dead did better than Noah.
- If atheists are bothered by his portrayal, his recommendation is to ‘watch a movie that’s atheist.’
- He’s a Christian, but not a Bible-thumper.
- Being a Christian in Hollywood can be damaging to the career, but he’s doing okay. (By the way, he has a Kickstarter for his next film, and he’d like you to support that, if you can.)
- He knows deathbed confessions and conversions are super common, because his mom was a nurse on the criminal floor of a hospital, and the majority of nonbelievers begged for her to pray for them as they died.
Notably, that last bit — about the frequency of deathbed conversions — earned Sorbo a hefty number of downvotes. To the other statements, follow-up questions included:
- Do you actually even know what an atheist is?
- Is ‘I have atheist friends’ your equivalent of the ‘I have black friends’ or ‘I have gay friends’ that can be expected before someone says something especially racist or anti-gay?
- You really think anecdotal evidence from your mother’s nursing experience proves that most nonbelievers convert on their deathbeds?
He was also told by numerous commenters that atheists aren’t mad just for fun, but because of discrimination, and because of, ironically, characterizations exactly like his in God’s Not Dead, and on Reddit.
Of course, he didn’t respond to any of the follow-up, but that likely has more to do with the nature of an AMA, and less to do with avoiding any subjects.
TELL US: Is Kevin Sorbo getting it all wrong? If we were playing things-fundamentalists-say-to-atheists Bingo, would you want him on your team?