If the saying holds true.

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80 Responses to If the saying holds true.

  1. K.Y. says:

    I’m not familiar with the saying. Can anyone help me out?

  2. (x, why?) says:

    The saying is that “There are no atheists in foxholes”, referring to the trenches that soldiers find themselves in when pinned down under enemy fire.

    The “C” tag indicates that we’re talking about a totally different kind of …

  3. le_sacre says:

    the saying is, “there are no atheists in foxholes.”

  4. Holy “I thinks he got it backwards!”

  5. tudza says:

    The problem is that this graph does not represent the old saying, “There are no atheists in foxholes.” rather it represents the unfortunate outcome when that is not true.

  6. Renee says:

    I think I’m offended.

  7. M says:

    If A then not B to equal C

  8. peetie says:

    and I just think it’s awesome. And I’m one of those conservative right wing fundamentalist christians. I still thinks it’s awesome in its awesome hilariousness.

  9. JAB says:

    So…if an athiest is in a foxhole, it means he’s (or she’s) having lacivious carriage with a fox?

    The pun on foxholes is hilarious. the rest not so much.

  10. I’m pretty sure I’m offended.

  11. Hank Mills says:

    Why is this filed under orthodontics?

  12. Big Scott says:

    Had to say this one out loud before it hit me… guess I’m a bit tired. Funny nonetheless.

  13. foolfodder says:

    I’m confused. Is it saying if the statement “there are no atheists in foxholes” is true, then all atheists are having sex with foxes?

  14. PKM says:

    To all those confused, you have to add the title to the equation.

    “IF the saying holds true that there are “no atheists in foxholes” THEN atheists in foxholes = bestiality”

    I’m not offended, and I’m not even an atheist soldier.

    Also, on a completely tangential note, below this text box I can see a button “Submit Comment” with a subtitle “Maybe not in China”. It’s funny because of internet censorship.

  15. Philip says:

    I’m offended. The bigotry on this page disgusts me.

  16. Philip says:

    goodness people. It’s a humorous way of saying “not everyone is christian like you”. Possibly a bit risque, but its a funny, clever reductio ad absurdum. It made me giggle!

  17. Anonymous Atheist says:

    Damn right, I’d do a fox and your god can’t stop me!

  18. Ferin says:

    Or C=Furries.

  19. Ferin says:

    Btw, I’m a furry myself, and find this quite hilarious.

  20. Steven says:

    My coworkers are wondering why I am chuckling inappropriately. Nice job!

    To the offended commenters – what exactly is offensive here? It’s a nice play on imagery. I’m an atheist, and not offended in the slightest, nor do I see how one could be.

  21. Anonymous says:

    It took me a while, but I too get it. I’m not sure what is offensive about it, but I laughed for a while after reading it.

  22. Adrienne says:

    Thank you Matt. Cleared it right up.

  23. bibbles says:

    At most it’s making fun of a cliché in an absurd manner. The more I think about it, the more I wonder how you even decide who would have a right to be offended…

  24. GregLondon says:



  25. So…. the Indexed creator is a right-wing religious bigot who’s trying to say that atheists are as bad a homosexuals? Or that atheists are homosexuals?

    Even though I go to church every Sunday I’m offended, too.

    Jessica, you should be ashamed of yourself.

  26. Tracy King says:

    Duh, it’s parodying the stupid notion (perpetrated by fundie religious nutjobs) that atheists are immoral. Which is of course absurd and atheists are no more likely to have sex with a fox than your average Catholic. Sex with an altar boy, far less likely. Sex with another atheist, probably more likely.

  27. Christna says:

    To Cory,

    How does this have anything to do with homosexuals?

    Kudos Jessica, risky and hilarious.

  28. MarkH says:

    Okay, I think I get it. I had to run it over in my head a few times. If it turns out there *are* atheists in foxholes after all, then the result would be bestiality.

    The figuring it out removed all the funny, but I still like it, especially if it’s intended as a big f.u. to the fundies who believe that nonsense in the first place.

  29. fat girl says:

    oh, my sweet baby jesus, that’s funny!!!

  30. JAB says:


    foolfodder, thanks, i hadn’t noticed the title. now it’s wicked funny.

  31. Jessica:

    I made the leap based on how fundies associate associate homosexuality with all kinds of sexual “evils” – favourites are pedophilia nd bestiality. In retrospect, that might have been a bit of a stretch, though “foxhole” is slang in the gay community.

    In any case, it still looks like you’re saying that atheists engage in bestiality, and the only people I know who say things like that are right-wing conservative fundamentalist bigots.

    You should still be ashamed.

  32. John says:

    On first read I thought that Jessica had gone stupid in a unique and creative way. on the second I realized that she was trying to show how silly it was.

    But still.. when on the first read it sounds like “atheist soldiers are into bestiality”… not funny. Not as bad as I thought at first, but still not funny.

    Oh, and since when is “foxhole” slang in the gay community? I’m pretty sure I haven’t heard that in any context involving gays.

  33. Those who are offended, or think this is about religion, homosexuality, moralism, whatever– they’ve not gotten the joke yet.

    It took me a couple minutes… ;)

  34. Cara says:

    Cory, you need to get a grip and read the rest of Jessica’s site to realize that if anything, this website has a liberal bent.

  35. Philip says:

    There is no liberal bend bent enough to make up an excuse for this cartoon.

    Jessica, love your cartoons, hate this one.

  36. Pingback: Chipping the web: October 28th -- Chip’s Quips

  37. Calvin says:

    I second the alternate: “C = Furries”

    (I’m confused, are folks *seriously* getting offended by this? What’s wrong with these people? Do they just go through their lives in a perpetual state of offendedness?)

  38. Anonymous Coward says:

    Come on, this is like the New Yorker cover mocking how the right portrays Obama — http://www.newyorker.com/online/covers/slideshow_blittcovers — and wound up taking all kinds of flack about it from people who thought they were serious. I’m an atheist, I think it’s a funny cartoon. If anything, it mocks the religious fundamentalists. Either way, lighten up.

  39. Matt says:

    Hank Mills asked “Why is this filed under orthodontics?”

    Honestly that’s my absolute favorite part of this joke; it’s a scary, scary thought, and I thank Jessica for going there first.

  40. Vivica, Jaime, and Redd (but not Megan) says:

    We are highly offended. We do not engage in such activities and resent any insinuation that we do. The obvious liberal commie socialist slant on this site is ridiculous. If you don’t change your obviously racist background to one that is more inclusive all ALL skin colors, we will have no other option but to stop reading the blog. Don’t make us do it!!

  41. anonymous says:

    I sure hope that’s satire, and not an actuall statement /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\

  42. Voice of Reason says:

    Allow me to explain the joke (they’re funnier that way!) for all you people who are offended for reasons which don’t exist.

    As stated above, there is a saying that “There are no atheists in foxholes,” meaning that if you’re an atheist soldier, once you’re in deep crap in a firefight, you’ll be praying to God to get you out alive.

    The title of this piece is “If the saying holds true.” So, assuming the phrase “there are no atheists in foxholes” is true (and it is NOT; that’s necessary for the funny), then any atheist that is in a foxhole is engaged in an act of bestiality because they can’t be in the foxhole as used in the military vernacular.

    She is pointing out the absurdness of the target phrase “There are no atheists in foxholes” in an even more absurd manner. For those of you who still do not understand and are still offended, get off the internet before you hurt yourself.

  43. plot says:

    Howdy! Am atheist. Found it hilarious.

    Family’s atheist. Also military. They found it hilarious. No offense taken.

    For those who are all ‘shame shame shame’, dudes, chill, you need hobbies.

    For those who are all ‘highly offended!’, congratulations, you have found free speech. NOTE: you have no right not to be offended.

    For those who are all political, dudes, found your own popular intelligent very-visited site. No? Then stop criticizing out of jealousy.

    Great job, Oh Great Author!

  44. Philip says:

    This cartoon and its suggested “proper” interpretation are so way off in left field, I can only believe this. This cartoon was not meant for the general internet public but for only die-hard Indexed-cateers (Floabw, but respectfully) who are knowledgeable in all the inside jokes and innuendo established by this site.

    I am new, and I didn’t get it. I get it now, but I still disapprove of it. Why? Because people sometimes become get so lazy self-editing their own commentary that they stop being able to think about how things could be communicated to the larger public. E.g. Pfotenhauer’s “real Virgina”. Palin’s “Pro-America”. Obama’s “cling to guns or religion”. This is the way I see this cartoon.

    (Stepping off soap box) Thanks for reading this.

  45. Dharmamama says:

    Are you new at reading Venn diagrams, too? You don’t have to be an Indexed fan to “get it”, you just have to be familiar with Venn diagrams.

  46. brad says:

    holy balls phil.

    voice of reason provided a very clear explanation of what was already a pretty clear diagram.

    read that.
    calm yourself.
    think twice (or more) before stepping on your soapbox next time.

  47. This was one of the best yet. Thanks for keeping us thinking, Jessica.

  48. fishboy says:

    Jessica – as always I love your stuff, and most especially the ones that turn out to be ‘controversial’. My you do attract a lot of people just itching to be offended!

  49. Philip says:

    Troll! Troll! Troll! Blah! blah! blah!

  50. wow says:

    I read the comments because I didn’t get it, then first I thought it implied “saying there are no atheists in foxholes is like saying there is not bestiality” — they both exist; then I thought, “oh, it’s a pun on foxhole”

    now I can’t decide which is funnier, the venn, or the swarm of people getting offended at THEIR OWN INTERPRETATION of it, or sure it’s poking fun at THE OTHER GROUP, whoever that is.

    People see the world through their own eyes, and will be offended by their perception, with minimal regard for reality.

  51. GregLondon says:

    Wow. For the completely clueless, a short education:

    “There are no atheists in foxholes” is a meme often used by religous folks to “argue” that atheists will give up their lack of belief in god when their life is on the line, i.e. in combat, hunkered down in a foxhole.

    It’s a logical fallacy, (a nonsequitor and an appeal to emotion) but it’s a common counter-argument used by people who believe in God when they’re debating with atheists. in other words, it doesn’t prove anything as to whether or not God exists, but it can derail conversations.

    Ok, first bit established. Now to the second part.

    What we call “humor” is a many-faceted thing, but one type of humor is something called the “pun”. A pun is a statement which purposely employs a word (or words) that have more than one meaning, and where one meaning is rather bland and the other meaning turns the entire phrase on its head. This commonly, though not universally, is found to be humorous among earth dwelling humans.

    Therefore, the comic is a pun on the phrase “there are no atheists in foxholes”. The bland meaning of “foxhole” is a hole dug in the ground used for protection from fire during combat. The “pun” meaning is a different type of fox hole, at which point, many people’s internal language parser finds the process of disambiguating the ambiguous to be what is known in the biz as “funny”.

    If you did not find this funny, you may not find “puns” funny, in which case, what in hell are you reading “indexed” for?

    Alternatively, you may normally enjoy puns, but were unable to parse the venn diagram to the bland/original phrase of “there are no atheists in foxholes”. Maybe you were unfamiliar with the phrase, maybe you didn’t process the meaning of Venn diagrams properly where a “subset” means “in”. whatever. If you didn’t get the original phrase, then you missed the joke.

    Lastly, if you got the original phrase, but couldn’t discern the intention of the disambiguation clue, i.e. the word “bestiality” was a clue that you should go back and reevaluate the meaning of the word “foxhole”, then you also missed the joke.

    In either of these last two cases, either not getting “no atheists in foxholes” or not getting which word was the “pun” word, then you probably parsed the drawing into something completely unrelated to the actual joke. Because you parsed the drawing to mean something it didn’t mean, you not only missed the joke, but you might suddenly become offended at the meaning you invented that wasn’t actually in the drawing.

    At which point, the problem is you, not the drawing.

    Seriously, one of the fundamental comic points of “indexed” is that it provides a minimum of text and you have to discern the meaning by parsing the image. Once you parse it, you fill in the missing words and the missing meaning, and that becomes the funny part.

    If Indexed images contained subtitles that provided the full meaning of the image that you are supposed to extract, there would be no experience of humor. The meaning would be conveyed, but the experience of extracting the meaning that actually generates the funny experience would be destroyed.

    If you are angry or upset because you thought this image meant something that it didn’t actually mean, I don’t know what to tell you other than you should probably go read “Peanuts” or something more on that level for your comic relief

  52. some guy says:

    London, you have too much time on your hands,take a chill pill and call me in the morning.

    this index just isnt funny and misses the mark.

  53. GregLondon says:

    > this index just isnt funny

    It’s oh-my-gawd hilarious.

  54. Jon says:

    It’s silly to try and make a judgment for everyone on what is or isn’t funny/offensive. Humor and offense are entirely subjective. What concerns me is that everyone seems to think it’s OK to declare religious folk as fundamentalist and bigoted. Does no one else see that as an absurd sweeping generalization?

  55. Philip says:

    Jessica, you have a very loyal following. I feel no hard feeling towards those who admire you. (which is good, because I am still one of them.) I hope you take no offense from this:


  56. tim says:

    As a fox, I am totally offended by this. Get out of my hole, atheist!

  57. Fernando says:

    I’m offended. That is, I’m offended by seeing that some people do get offended at the card.

  58. GregLondon says:

    > I hope you take no offense from this:

    Comparing followers of Obama to followers of cults and Hitler? Yeah, I’m offended.

    What are you? A ultra religious McCain follower? No, wait, you’re going to tell me you’re “undecided” because you think that’ll show that you’re not one of those mindless obama followers your little drawing mocks. Course, McCain didn’t make the list of names on your little cartoon, did it?

    Either way, apparently your religion got insulted because you didn’t understand the comic, and now you’re going to hold to your original, and completely wrong, interpretation of what this comic meant.

    “There are no atheists in foxholes” is a stupid statement. It’s a logical fallacy. It doesn’t prove anything. It is worthy of mocking. And mocking it doesn’t mock religion itself or god herself. God doesn’t want stupid people defending her existence with stupid statements, and “no atheists in foxholes” is one of those moronic statements.

    Go read Reader’s Digest or something.

  59. Jason says:

    Phillip –

    Plus five points for comparing Bush followers to Obama followers. A valid argument likely to offend almost everyone involved! :D

  60. web design says:

    My favorite comment in that thread:

    “To all those confused, you have to add the title to the equation.

    “IF the saying holds true that there are “no atheists in foxholes” THEN atheists in foxholes = bestiality”

    I’m not offended, and I’m not even an atheist soldier.

    Also, on a completely tangential note, below this text box I can see a button “Submit Comment” with a subtitle “Maybe not in China”. It’s funny because of internet censorship.”

  61. Chaz says:


    If you’re offended by the comparison of Obama (or McCain) followers to Nazis, please get off the internet before you hurt yourself.

    Blind devotion is blind devotion is blind devotion. People have, and do, and will continue to kill for all of the above. Perhaps someone will kill Obama in the name of Hitler. Perhaps someone killed Hitler in the name of Freedom. Perhaps someone will kill Freedom in the name of Ted Danson.

    You never know.

  62. Greg London says:

    > If you’re offended by the comparison of
    > Obama (or McCain) followers to Nazis,
    > please get off the internet before
    > you hurt yourself.

    Right. Next time I see a Neo Nazi skinhead
    chanting for the death of someone because
    they’re black, I should remember, hey,
    this is just the internet, and I’m not
    allowed to be offended at their bigotry.

  63. Philip says:

    The truth of the matter is, I couldn’t think of any abilities that McCain supporters would “swoon over”! I could have put Palin on that list, just for the “swooning over of the abilities”. But not for the other two conditions. Mmmm… I think I finally know why McCain went with Palin for VP.

  64. Philip says:

    Best statements on the page so far. (my opinion)

    Jon: “It’s silly to try and make a judgment for everyone on what is or isn’t funny/offensive. … ”

    Chaz: “Blind devotion is blind devotion is blind devotion.”

  65. Greg London says:

    I couldn’t think of any abilities that McCain supporters would “swoon over”

    Best statements on the page so far. … “Blind devotion is blind devotion is blind devotion.”

    Yeah, I know, calling someone a “Maverick” who voted with Bush 90 percent of the time, who wants to continue Bush’s stupid war in Iraq, that’s not swooning, that’s not blind devotion.

    Uh huh.

    A man who spent more than two decades fighting for corporate deregulation that was part of what got us in this current economic mess, a man who got caught red handed as a player in the Keating Five scandal which is part and parcel of the economic problem we have now, holding him up as some sort of great reformer and is going to “rein in” Wall Street, that’s not swooning. Yeah. Right.

    Well, Phillip, I have to admit you are right about one thing:

    I can think of nothing about John McCain that I’d swoon over right now. A few years back when he fought the Republicans from using the Nuclear Option to stack the courts with a bunch fo right wing religious nutjobs, I had to respect McCain for standing up to partisanship and for instead doing what was right. But seeing him blindly, blindly, chant for us to go to war in Iraq back in 2002 and to continue that war chant to this very day when the vast majority of Americans, and even the vast majority of Iraqis, want us out, well, that burned up whatever good karma he had from me.

    Then picking Palin, someone with zero skills, zero experience, who thinks that men walked with dinosaurs, who is a religious nutjob, who misused her power as governer for petty family squabbles and then fired people who wouldn’t go along with her squablle, who fired a librarian after the librarian said she’d fight any attempt by Palin to ban a book, for McCain to pick some nut like this, all so he could try to “steal” some Hillary voters and so he could get some of the religious right to vote for him, well, that hardly qualifies as “country first”.

    But you no doubt aren’t just in it for blind devotion, right? You don’t “swoon” for McCain, even though you somehow managed to not put him on your stupid comic comparing Cults and Hitler to Obama and Bush. Everybody but McCain followers are blind followers, right?

    I know, I know. All I have to go on is the fact that back in October of 2002 when McCain was pumping for war on David Letterman saying it would be short and easy, Obama was warning us that to invade Iraq would be a collossal mistake, a mistake that could last for years and cost untold fortunes to pay for. The fact that while Bush has been trashing the US Constitution for the last 8 years, Obama is a Constitutional lawyer who can actually repair some of the damage our Constitution has taken over the last eight years. The fact that despite warnings to the contrary, Obama’s actions as a politician in Illinois state government and then as a senator has somehow managed to NOT cause Illinois to collapse into an inoperable socialist quagmire. But really, besides those hard facts of history, I’m just a blind follower of Obama.

    Uh huh.

    Keep patting yourself on the back, Philip.

  66. Philip says:

    Good Grief! (I stole that from the Peanuts)

  67. Philip says:

    ok, ok, ok, Now I’m trolling. I’m sorry about that.

    Greg, Your intellectualism will be incomplete until you see how much you are prejudiced and close-minded.

    Greg, please have the last word.

  68. Philip says:

    Here’s another angle on this. So the
    atheist is in the military. He gets crap because he doesn’t believe in God. Next he gets sent to Iraq. Thirdly there is nothing to have sex with except for animals.

    So here it is…

    He doesn’t choose a goat.
    He doesn’t choose a dog.
    He doesn’t choose a chicken.

    He chooses a fox…

    Do you know how wild and dangerous foxes are? It’s crazy the kind of carnage that the Atheist is risking. There aren’t even foxes in Iraq! I don’t think. This person shipped the poor fox from the west.

    So considering this, I still am immensely offended!… But at least the Atheistic soldier is honored, by this cartoon, for his (or her!) sheer, yet hypothetical, courage!

  69. Gabrielle says:

    i lol’ed.

  70. Chakka says:

    As an agnostic vet I find this relavent to my interests. And damn funny too. Thanks for the grin.

  71. Aggs says:

    I still don’t get the orthodontia. Braces… teeth… suspenders… straightness? I know i’ll feel silly once it’s explained, but could someone please explain?

  72. Philip says:

    See: http://thisisindexed.com/2007/04/brace-yourself/

    So I think what she means with the reference to orthodontics is this: the more space between one’s incisors the more, the more one agrees with the above.

    I may be wrong.

    I say “the more space between one’s incisors the less offended one is.” (joke)

  73. Philip says:

    Now some else explain what the “excuses” tag is for. Don’t worry about offending me; it’s too late.

  74. Pingback: Maybe Atheists Shouldn’t Be in Foxholes… | All Reason

  75. Ninya says:

    I’m both offended and amused. Which makes it even funnier.

    I’m reminded of the dyslexic agnostic insomniacs (those who stay up at night contemplating the existence of dog).

  76. Arthur Dent says:

    Personally, I think getting offended at this is like being offended by the name “Big Bang Theory”. Sure, it sounds dirty, it may seem offensive, but really, you’re just looking at it the wrong way.

  77. Erika says:

    I find the comic pretty funny, although the logic puzzle of figuring it out takes away a bit of the funniness.

    I find the saying “there are no atheists in foxholes” pretty silly… sure, most people will pray when they’re in deadly danger; most people will try anything when they’re desperate, but that doesn’t mean everything they try is rational.

    When you think about it too much, though: If this comic is to be taken as a Venn diagram, the Foxholes circle containing the Atheists circle doesn’t mean either “atheists are in (military) foxholes” or “atheists are in (sexual) foxholes.” It means “atheists are a type of foxhole.” And I can’t see how that equates to bestiality. But I guess I’m being too nitpicky.

  78. Pingback: Maybe Atheists Shouldn’t Be in Foxholes… | Friendly Atheist