I get tired of the atheist canard that religion has killed more people in history than any other ideology. First, they are willing to attribute wars to Christianity that were more political than religious, and second, they are unwilling to own the atrocities of atheistic communism.
But let’s be fair – if the Christians can be saddled with the Inquisition (a political power play by the King of Spain) or the Crusades (a justified defensive war after 400 years of Muslim conquest), then atheists should own the atrocities of the political movements of which atheism was a central tenet, particularly Communism.
But I have searched largely in vain for a list of atrocities associated with each ideology, so I built my own spreadsheet, largely from these sources:
- List of Genocides by Death Toll (wikipedia)
- List of wars and antrhopogenic disasters by death toll (wikipedia)
- Islam Killings (markhumphrys.com)
I limited my spreadsheet to conflicts that killed more than 750,000 people (although not sure if the Islam Killings site did that, so their numbers might be slightly inflated).
Who has killed the most?
As per my graph above, you can see:
- Power hungry men bent on Empire. Especially in China.
- Islam’s conquests.
- People seeking freedom from Empire builders
- Atheistic Communism
- Racism (including eugenics and Nazism)
So are atheists right?
- Yes. When atheists claim that religion has killed millions, they are mostly referring to Islam.
- But. They are not morally pure either, atheism does not scale up well at all.
- Don’t Forget: Hidden in the ‘racism’ category is the Nazi genocide that can be somewhat blamed on social Darwinism, and Darwinism is a close fellow with atheism. 1 2
- Christianity: Seems to be the lowest of the six categories.
Here’s a link to my DeathCount spreadsheet if you want to see how I broke it up.
- Examining the historical and logical links between Darwin and eugenics (wholereason.com) ↩
- Darwin Understood the Social Application of his Theory (wholereason.com) ↩