Imagine you come from a deeply religious family.
You’ve just told them you’re an atheist.
There are tears and shouts and slammed doors. It’s to be expected, really.
But what if, after all that, your family didn’t try to argue with you? What if they just let it go? What if they didn’t try to “save” you?
Would you be upset? Insulted? Would you still feel loved?
Kinzer raised the question on the Friendly Atheist Forums:
… The fact that they don’t try help you avoid this punishment [of eternal hellfire] seems a little, well, mean and careless. If they do diligently try to convert you, doesn’t that mean that they care about you? That they don’t want you to experience any pain.
So what’s better?
Would you rather have your family leave you alone about your atheism? Or would you at least hope they try to convert you — even if it’s useless — because it means they love you?