RMS Quote of the Day

I love kooks. You can tell because I find the following rms quote especially entertaining. rms is a “devout” atheist, but he says:

indeed, it seems to me that a sincere Christian must condemn non-free software as satanic in spirit. If you were Satan, and you wanted to corrode the bonds of society, what could be more effective than offering individuals something attractive, profitable or fun, on condition that they refuse to share it with anyone else?

Now, I do try to avoid using satanic, er, proprietary software, and for almost the precise reason’s he mentions, but I’m amused because his statement implies that he imputes hypocricy to Christian users of, say, Mac OS X. But it does make you think. In fact, when Marco Fioretti wrote about Free Software’s surprising sympathy with Catholic doctrine, it got many Christians (especially Catholics, of course) to think about their use of non-free software. Of course, I see this as just so much cultural blindness. Christians are so immersed in their culture that they don’t think deeply about things that are not directly addressed by the traditional expression of their faith. This is not a failing of either the Christian or his faith. However, when you are confronted with an uncomfortable fact or a new perspective that hadn’t occurred to you before, you have a responsibility to consider its impact. At the top, I said “I love kooks” and mentioned a well-known (in some small circles) kook. The even less-well-known kooks are interesting as well. Take this exchange in the comments of that article:

  scary stuff  By iang1965 (192499) on 2006.04.16 7:09 (#125135)    This kind of discussion is, quite frankly, scary. I would have  to question the mentality of the person who deems it necessary  to relate a software license to a religious doctrine.  
  Fear moral choice  By Anonymous Reader on 2006.04.16 9:30    Right, nothing more terrifying than living a life based on  ethical beliefs. Hide quick! Here comes a cadre of  vegetarians, volunteer firemen, and nuns!  

I am constantly amazed at the number of people who get the heebee-jeebees anytime any sort of religous belief is mentioned.

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