Is S.E. Cupp an atheist?

On one of the podcasts, Ryan commented on the fact he felt that there shouldn’t be a “purity” test when it came to atheism. While I agree no one should need to prove they are a true nonbeliever, you have to wonder if there aren’t a few who “fake it” for financial and political gain. Take the laughingly ignorant S.E. Cupp, who’s been making the rounds as Fox News’ new token “atheist”. She’s written a book suspiciously called “Losing OUR religion” , and she’s convinced there is a liberal conspiracy to undermine and attack religion.

A few days ago she went on “Real Time with Bill Maher”, and Bill confronted her about it. She came off looking fairly uninformed about the relative religiousity of people in the media, and my spider sense started to tingle. I’m not the only one who is suspicious of her non-belief. There’s even a Facebook group that claims she’s not actually a real atheist (with a surprisingly large number of TGA fans who have joined).

I’ll admit I’m suspicious of her intentions, but that may have more to do with the fact she’s obviously a clever opportunist. She may label herself a non-believer, but it’s clear her audience is very religious, and fearful of the way their religion is being tossed to the side in light of new discoveries about the natural world.

The Rational Ape has a great article detailing his suspicions about her lack of belief (and the fact that she doesn’t know what “allegory” means), but in the end, there’s little you can do about someone who might be faking disbelief simply to get attention (how annoying is it when Kirk Cameron claims he used to be an atheist?). Do I think she believes in God? Probably not, but she does seem to have a pretty weird agenda. Why would she welcome the inclusion of religion in politics, or be so blind as to think belief somehow makes politicians more trustworthy? She is either deliberately lying to placate her base, or she’s woefully misinformed about the dangers of mixing politics and religion. In any case, she’s not too impressive, and it’s my hope that she’ll quietly fade into obscurity as her ignorance and incompetence is slowly revealed to the general public.

Comments (47)

  • avatar

    Richard Feinburg

    I’m not one of those atheist that is angry at god. You can’t be an atheist and hate god at the same time. It defeats the meaning of atheist. I think she is confuse on what the word atheist means.

    S.E. Cup is hot!!!

  • avatar

    Angelo

    It is funny that this now shows, when I saw the clip this morning I thought the same thing, even there is no purity test for us, one can smell a rat when you see one.

  • avatar

    Peggy B

    Yeah. Not an atheist. But I’m sure FauxNews loves her.

  • avatar

    Gauldar

    FOX probably thinks they can use her since she supports Republicans, and that they can convince people they are coving both sides without bias. She’s just a tool like the rest of the, but her angle is to be the voice of republicans that don’t want to be caught up in religion, yet stay pro-business/industry like they used to be before the born again Christian craze.

  • avatar

    Richard Feinburg

    Just because she is a Republican does not mean she can’t be an atheist. A lack of any belief in a god does not mean you need to be a liberal.

  • avatar

    Darkpassenger

    Its as if she wants to desperately become an atheist but she never read the hand book. That explains this makes you an atheist and this doesn’t and what the facts are on both sides. Almost as if she forgot her glasses the day she read the books and mixed up the titles of what makes you an atheist and what doesn’t. She is giving the right information but for the wrong side, she is speaking for the theists and saying she is an atheist. so I say she is an infantile atheist that is to say she knows nothing and Has not done her research and when she has then she can claim herself as an atheist. Until then she is an idiot.

  • avatar

    Charlie

    Some people think atheism is good for them, but not good for everybody. Because you know, they can handle it because they are so much more intelligent/strong than the stupid/weak unwashed masses.

  • avatar

    Michael

    S.E. Cupp. First I would like to say I do not think she is an Atheist. While I won’t go so far as to say there is a, “Handbook of Atheism,” as Darkpassenger implies; I do get the point he is making. I think S.E. is the Token Black in a pretty little white girl package, which Middle ‘Merica finds palatable. Yet it’s not that simple. She is not just the Token Atheist. The shit that is ejected from her mouth reeks of a familiar stench. Theism. She may throw in a couple of lines familiar with Atheists, but that is just smoke-and-mirrors used to build some street cred. If she were really an Atheist, I would like to seriously have a talk with her.

    Perhaps a spanking too. (meh, she is rather cute, I’ll giver her that…). All joking aside, that leads me to another point. Where S.E Cupp really pisses me off (besides all the other ways she really pisses me off) is that she is the one good looking woman I have ever come across who claims to be an atheist. Why does that piss me off? Simple: the one female “atheist” who is actually good looking is nothing more than a theist in atheist’s clothing. Bah!

  • avatar

    Darkpassenger

    @ Michael

    Sorry if i didn’t totally clarify, I was implying a metaphorical handbook or collection of books and information. I guess i was a little to cryptic in my description of a Book, I would like to imagine that the only qualifications for an atheist or to become and atheist is to understand what and atheist is.To do so would mean that you would have do some formal research as to what atheist believes and what are the facts. That would be what it is that i meant by the atheist hand book a general understanding of the ideology of atheism. something that S.E. has misconstrued ideas and facts about. so once again sorry that i did not fully explain myself.

  • avatar

    Mctaffity

    She’s deffo no Atheist. No true Atheist would argue that believers are not delusional – if they’re not, there’d be a god. Also, her opening comments regarding Atheists who “hate” god is the result of her mouth being directly connected to a Xtian fundie’s brain methinks.

  • avatar

    Ian Goldberg

    Watch this “atheist” claim she would never vote an atheist into office. Why? Because religion keeps people honest. Why is that? Because religious people answer to a higher power every night. Sounds like your typical atheist!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nl8v9wGfpQI

  • avatar

    joe botelho

    Who gives a shit what’s coming out of her mouth i want to put something in it. She hot with those glasses and that rack fuck she even knows how to right. S. E. Cup will you marry me?

  • avatar

    Brewlord

    I watched her and listened to a previous interview with her. She didn’t seem to know the first thing about atheism other than” i don’t believe in God” she is hot, but here is a whole lot of stupid coming out of her

  • avatar

    baldatheist

    When I watched this on Friday, I was thinking that she was a theist with a plan to pretend to be atheist who will later be re-born. I know many “nones,” and not one would ever defend religion the way she does. There are some who will say that religion is helpful for some in times of need, but that is about it. She is defending religion the way many xian apologists seem to do. Her defense of her position on the anti-religious media is incredibly weak, at least from what she said on the show. Almost every atheist that has even some knowledge of the state of religion in America could rip her defense apart. I don’t think every atheist needs to be a strident anti-religious person, but I certainly don’t want this ignoramus representing atheists on any talk show ever again.

    What really got me was Cory Booker’s ignorance of what Bill was trying to say about how religion causes problems. He seems (like most xians) to just forget about all the bad shit that religion does. He also failed to be honest about xian arrogance. The compartmentalization that theists are able to do just amazes me.

  • avatar

    Dr.Death

    “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves” (Matt. 7:15).

    The bible warned us of these theist(wolves) in atheist(sheep) clothing, Oh wait I forgot the bible meant things the other way around, my bad.

    Joking aside, I think that she is really confused about her atheism, or maybe she is actually a theist. Or maybe she is trolling us all in order to sell more books. Either way no one would have paid attention to her if she wasn’t hot.

    PS: I would totally do her.

  • avatar

    Benjamin

    She is clearly deluded in the sense that many religious people are, but she has a certain amount of intelligence that does not allow her to believe in spite of all the evidence. She is an interesting case, of which I’m sure there are more of among the masses. People might believe, but come to find that they can no longer maintain the delusion. But they still, after all the time spent believing it, indulge in the falsity that even if it is not true, religion is good. I’, sure Republican pundits will begin trotting out a view of them, since they are getting owned of the existence, they may appeal to the idea that religion is good for people. It has been done many times before, this might just be a brand new opportunity to attack (or defend) on this front

  • avatar

    dave

    I wonder if Bill fucked her after the show. If he didn’t I’d be disappointed. She’s hot!

    But totally not an atheist. She sounds really dumb too.

  • avatar

    Dustinius

    A sleazy tabloid journalist with sex appeal, nothing more. Having only just discovered this media blow-up doll, I haven’t yet made a determination as to the sincerity of her professed atheism, though I am highly skeptical for obvious reasons. Excerpts from her book seem only to echo the standard “Christian nation” arguments of the religious right and don’t show much in the way of creativity. Anyway, effectively, she’s a Christian and I’ll treat her as such.

  • avatar

    Matt

    I really dig your logo and banner but I’ve gotta say, this blog is pretty insipid. You don’t seem to have a very firm grasp on social, political, or theological ideas and realities.

    Also, hasn’t anyone harped on you before for the clear self-contradiction that is “atheism?” I mean honestly, just as any religious individual will claim full understanding of their own metaphysical existence based largely upon faith, atheists for all their “godlessness” turn around and do exactly the same!

    Conceding to know everything about the universe requires either ignorance or unsubstantiated belief (also known as faith). You should change this blog name to “the good agnostics” or be forever guilty of utter unintellectual hypocrisy. Don’t you find it at all ironic that intellectualism is the supposed “backbone” of atheism? c’mon guys

  • avatar

    Jacob Fortin

    Atheism is merely choosing not to believe in the supernatural, or in any other revealed religions. If you think it’s arrogant to hold the universe has no supernatural explanation, then so be it. If you are religious or agnostic, I ask you this basic question: what are your unstated assumptions? Do you think holding out for a supernatural explanation to the universe somehow makes you wiser? What basis do you have to believe this is a possibility? If you have no answer for that question, perhaps you have not fully realized even agnosticism pertains to a “potential” belief in something. I find atheism no more arrogant than refusing to believe in leprechauns, elves, or fairies.

  • avatar

    Scott

    She says that “even the Palestinian/Israli conflict that’s going on right now… that’s over land… that’s over territory.”
    Excuse me, but the conflict is between two religious peoples who believe that God reserved that land for them. So, it is very much about religion.

    Matt: Atheists do not claim to know everything about the Universe. We simply don’t believe in your God (or any others). It is the Theist who claims to know everything about the Universe. And the answer to everything is “God did it”. And if we don’t believe what they believe, we are going to burn in Hell for eternity, while they live in Paradise. THAT is arrogance.

  • avatar

    Scott

    Another point about Ms. Cupp… In other interviews, she claims that 98% of America is religious, and 80% is Christian (leaving a mere 2% of the population Atheist… in fact, she says that only 2% of the WORLD is Atheist). Not so. In America, the only single Christian denomination that outnumbers Atheists are Catholics. (Evangelicals outnumber Catholics, but that includes a lot of different groups.) We are roughly 20% of the American population.

  • avatar

    Drew

    Ten dollars says shes waiting for the most (monetarily) convenient time to have a born again conversion.

  • avatar

    SaucerheadTharp

    From her comments it’s like a Jew saying Mohammed was a true prophet and islamic relgious law is the bees knees and all other Jews are out to get the Muslims. I detect inconsistancies in her self-proclaimed philosophy.

    The question I’d like most to hear her answer is why she is an Atheist. “I don’t believe in God” while close to the technical definition, just doesn’t do it for me.

    Oh, and to stay consistant with the other posts, I would also do her.

  • avatar

    Patrick

    Is there a site that we can discuss Maher? He has no chain of logic. Oh, and PS- someone needs to tell him he’s not a member of the media. He’s a comic.

  • avatar

    S Born

    What I see here are a lot of politically liberal atheists who are horrified by the idea that someone who does not subscribe to THEIR religious substitute (secular humanism, and “progressive” politics) could possibly reject the idea of a higher being running the universe. This does not compute…………….

    Her beliefs are (1) there is not a god, (2) conservative, small government policies work best and maximize freedom, and (3) Many liberal social policies have been carried to such extremes that the have screwed up our culture.
    And, yes, she is hot.

  • avatar

    Lori

    Why is it people are incapable of understanding that one can be an Atheist and still stand up for others’ religious views? It’s called “Respect”, folks.

    I’ve been an Atheist for over 20 years, but I was raised Christian. Most of my family is still Christian. Most of my friends are Christian. The Media does, indeed, disrespect those who practice Christianity, and I can’t help but feel upset for my Christian family & friends when it happens. (For those of you wondering… Yes, like Cupp I, too, am a Republican because I believe in small government and a strong defense.)

    To those with suspicions SE Cupp is actually a Christian claiming to be an Atheist: A Christian could never openly deny God; it is an unforgivable sin. She is an Atheist, as am I.

  • avatar

    rexsalad

    Coulter-Beck spawn, over the top fake persona taking in only our own pitiful lowest common denominator, the republican base.

    A c cup??? Give me a break.

    Porn actress style, depth, and delivery. The atheism kink is her gimmick, the taboo and dirty element that excites as it repels and distinguishes her from the rest of the pretty, predictable right-wing sirens.

    Conservative comments refrains:

    “At last an honest atheist who admits they are
    inherently unfulfilled and bigoted!”

    “Such a smart, otherwise righteous young woman, I only pray she will one day come to Jesus..”

    Don’t worry, she will.

  • avatar

    Lori

    To rexsalad:
    The venom you spew does nothing to support your point. Folks like you are the reason Atheists aren’t taken seriously. You come across as vile, vicious, and intolerant — hence, your viewpoint is ignored before you’re finished speaking. Try to have a discussion with a bit of class instead of hatred, and maybe then people will strongly consider what you say.

    A side note… If you honestly think one political party is “better” than the other, you’re a narrow-minded zealot. The Democrats are just as smarmy as the Republicans, and the Republicans lie just as much as the Democrats. They’re politicians. For every Republican political fanatic and every conservative talking-head host you name, I can name an evenly sleazy Democrat politician and an equally disgraceful, liberal talking head.
    …As for both parties’ “bases”, the same assessment holds true.

  • avatar

    rexsalad

    Lori, I let my spew rest:

    Cupp’s persona is a blatantly manufactured commodity for Fox News land. These “I hope that I can one day believe” type of statements she’s made are laughably inconsistent with unbelief.

    What is truly venomous and vile is the cynicism it takes to present this absurd caricature as a serious analyst. My assessment is that there’s no analogous strain of disingenuousness in kind nor extent in progressive politics that now unfortunately seems to define American conservatism.

    Sorry if I’m ruining being an atheist for you.

  • avatar

    Nelson

    Lori,

    You know I wrote and asked S. E. about some of her comments regarding her athesism (by the way, atheist is not spelled with a capital :)). She never responded. But I will say this. Her line,”But I’m envious! I’m envious of the faithful! So I defend the faithful, especially the Christian right in America at every opportunity I get…I haven’t closed the door on faith…I really aspire to be a person of faith one day.” This is not the words of an atheist. I have not ever, EVER met and atheist that looks at a theist and says, “wow, you know, I wish I had the same faith as they do.” It would defeat the whole purpose of being an atheist. Welcom to agnostisim! I would say that you sit on the same boat as she does. I don’t defend xian friends and family, quite the opposite, I ask, “why do I need to hear this?”

    Lori, you state, “The venom you spew does nothing to support your point. Folks like you are the reason Atheists aren’t taken seriously. You come across as vile, vicious, and intolerant — hence, your viewpoint is ignored before you’re finished speaking.” Lol, I guess you haven’t spoken with many xian fundies. No matter how nice you are, it doesn’t matter, you’ll get the gospel boot on your neck while they tell you your going to hell. And if people seem feed up…well they are. I don’t appreciate that my son is told clouds are the footprints of Jesus. Yet at the age of six, he understand condensation and cloud formation with out any problems.

    Matt,
    You’re a moron. You obviously have no understanding of what is falling out of the orrifice in your face (lol or rather your fingers as you type). Faith has nothing to do with god. Yes atheist have faith that one day science and logic will explain everything. You know science don’t you? It’s that thing that talks about the planets and the solar system, chemestry, biology…yeah, you know, that thing they teach in school. Unlike theist that feel god (which there is no emperical proof of) is the only answer. You failed in trying to sound smart and sarcastic.

  • avatar

    Joe

    I will say a prayer for Maher. How can he not hear his own soul?

  • avatar

    Matthew

    She’s annoying. She asked Bill Maher why he is “angry at God”. That’s like asking why he is angry at Santa Claus or the Tooth Fairy. Referring to “God” as if it were a real person is a dangerous slippery slope, with all the idiots running around who think it is.

    Atheists have a right to be angry at religious people for promoting ignorance and brainwashing. The only positive argument for religion is that the end (control of dumb, violent animal minds) justifies the means (dishonesty).

  • avatar

    Sean

    Just watched her on Bill Maher, absolutely no way no how is she an atheist. Politics and ideology aside, one thing that all of us ex-Catholics turned atheists and especially ex-Catholic high schoolers turned atheists have in common is that overpowering feeling of freedom we finally felt getting the monkey off our back that is Catholic guilt. We were all finally able to say “yes, I love those parables of Jesus that taught me a lot re: morality” but I don’t have to believe all that other bullsh*t about a supernatural being who watches and judges me every day for having impure thoughts, hahaha. I mean c’mon, don’t we all remember that eureka moment when everything finally made sense and we didn’t have to delude ourselves with fairy tales anymore? That ah-ha moment so similar to when you figure out who put the presents under the tree every year. It’s obvious to anyone of us with critical rational brains (i.e. atheists) that this woman has never had that moment and is not truly an atheist. Asking Bill Maher why he is angry at God? Oops, can you say Freudian slip? Jealous of those who are connected to a higher power? Awww, c’mon, give it up already, she is an agnostic at best, but methinks the lady doth protest too much…

  • avatar

    karl

    You people are some of the dumbest people on earth. Just because Cupp does not meet YOUR textbook definition of an atheist you say she is not at an atheist. You are IGNORANT. If she thinks she is an atheist then she is an atheist. Actually who really cares? How many “religious” people know all the “rules” of their religion? None. This is not about Cupp being an atheist…this is about you people hating conservatives. The hypocrisy in these posts is disgusting!

  • avatar

    Ryan

    Karl,

    Christopher Hitchens is a hard-right-wing conservative who I disagree with politically on just about everything. He is also absolutely, unequivocally, an atheist. Karl Rove is also an atheist, and we all know where he stands politically. Nobody is arguing that conservatives can’t be atheists. That would be a ridiculous and easily disproven argument. What people are saying is that S E Cupp specifically does not appear to be an atheist. Her claim to atheism would be believed if so much of what she says and does did not appear to undermine it. She does not give the appearance of being somebody who even understands what atheism is. Certainly it’s possible that she doesn’t believe in God for emotional reasons. It’s also possible that she’s not an atheist but “plays one on TV” in order to sell her books and herself and give herself a certain type of street cred with Christian fundamentalists.

    None of us know her, so we can’t say, but when you bring Hitchens up as a counter-example of a conservative atheist, you can pretty quickly see why people aren’t buying her sincerity. She just doesn’t sound like she understands atheism on any level. She sounds like she’s either playing a role or is too intellectually lazy to understand her own stated position, neither of which is a good thing, IMO.

    If I walked around saying I was a Christian but I didn’t understand anything about the religion, what it teaches and why, I would pretty quickly be sniffed out by an Evangelical as a faker even if I yelled “I’m a Christian!” at the top of my lungs. This is the same thing.

    Ryan

  • avatar

    karl

    Ryan,

    I understand your point. She may very well be a fraud. Now someone not understanding anything about their religion is nothing unusual. It doesn’t necesarily mean they are faking anything. Think about all the people that are the same religion as their parents just because they are too lazy or ignorant to really understand their own belief system. I dont think most people really understand the religion they claim.

    Thanks for your articulate and intelligent post Ryan,

    Karl

  • avatar

    Guy Cabellero

    Karl, Yeah, like you are the arbiter of what is “articulate and intelligent”. Nice capitalization/shouting of your words to emphasize them too. Jeesh, talk about ignorant!

    How you can read through the more than a dozen posts and not figure out what people are talking about is amazing. The reason people care at all about Cupp, is not an issue of semantics, it is that her specious advocacy gets some media attention. S.E. Cupp’s atheism is quite obviously a dishonest ruse to try to lend credence to the notion that the “faith based” reasoning of the religious right should in some way be seen as legitimate and credible – even to non-believers. I don’t know if you claim to be an atheist or not, but your spurious reasoning is far more akin to that of the religious minded. Good luck and God Bless!

    Mr. Cabellero

  • avatar

    karl

    Wow? Mr. Cabellero, I see you have quite a chip on your shoulder. You should not get so bent out of shape when I compliment someone else. Ok, just to make you feel better about who you are…Thank you Mr. Cabellero for your intelligent and articulate response.

    I do have to laugh at the way you sign off…”Mr. Cabellero”. Talk about a desperate attempt to be legitimized…once again it shows you do have a chip on your shoulder. Were you picked on as a child? My guess is that you are still picked on today. I’m sorry for your sad lot in life. God Bless you! You will eventually move out of your mom’s basement. Keep the faith!

  • avatar

    rexsalad

    I guess it’s possible she’s a nonbeliever playing a “Christian Right” lovin’ atheist. Whatever her candid opinions are she’s primarily an opportunist; we’re seeing a schtick designed for the rubes. “As a comic, in all seriousness…” -Bobby Bitman

  • avatar

    Guy Cabellero

    Karl, Let me lay it out for you, real simple like:

    1. You open your first post with an ad hominem attack on everyone here for being “the dumbest people on earth” and “IGNORANT” when it is clear that you are the one not picking up on the main critique of Cupp.
    2. Ryan then spoon feeds you an alternative and simple explanation to help you understand.
    3. Finally you comprehend and you thank him for being “articulate” and “intelligent”, as if your inability to follow the previous posts in the thread is the fault of the other posters.
    4. I call you out by mimicking your basic approach, which is to start with a personal attack. I toss in a little sarcasm to reflect back to you your own initial contempt.
    5. I then get back to the content of this thread which is how objectionable the dishonesty of Cupp’s approach is.
    6. I sign off with an ironic play off of my nom de plume, “Mr.” Guy Cabellero, who is a character from the great satirical SCTV comedy show. (He always presented himself in a wheelchair – Why? Respect.)
    7. Your next post is nothing but a personal attack, based on your mis-read of my post, revealing, through some likely projection, your own chip on your own shoulder, and as I previously stated, demonstrating your own deficient reasoning.
    8. You end with a flourish and disparage those poor under-achievers who live in their moms’ basements. (Shame on you!)

    Thanks for coming out!

    Mr. Guy Cabellero

  • avatar

    karl

    Guy Cabellero (how witty),

    So…you are ashamed to post your real name!

    I think you are a cross dresser and you are jealous of the beauty of Cupp.

    I’m sure you are either a government employee or you are living off the government (in additon to living off your mother).

    I think your mother is calling you for dinner. Get upstairs or you’ll have to eat it cold.

    God Bless you and may you make it out of your mother’s basement, get away from your computer, and meet new people face to face.

  • avatar

    Revivor

    Folks she’s what ya call a Faux news atheist!! xD
    the type of good atheist that bows down before the christians. At least in this country you can do something like this, in the muslim world you get your head chopped off.

  • avatar

    Diogenes

    She’s not an atheist

    But I’d still fuck her anyway

  • avatar

    Anonym

    I don’t see how she’s that attractive. And only idiot fundies would consider this idiot smart.

  • avatar

    Rosaria

    I’m really impressed with your writing skills and also with the layout on your weblog. Is this a paid theme or did you modify it yourself? Either way keep up the excellent quality writing, it’s rare to see a nice blog like this one today.

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