Why I’m An Angry Atheist
Lately there has been lots of talk about how those pesky atheists want to take the Christ out of Christmas and some folk can’t fathom why atheists get upset about manger scenes and the 10 commandments in the courthouse. Some believers seem to think that since they can’t see a problem with religious privilege the atheists should just be quiet and not speak if no one is getting hurt.
Simply stated, religious privilege does hurt people. In the USA is it unconstitutional. While most people in the USA belong to some sort of Christian cult they all agree that the country is Christian based on the ludicrous notion that majority rules and has the right to violate the rights of the minority.
Well, all those good Christians would want a law enacted if it happened that the majority of religious citizens were Muslims. They would fight tooth and nail to keep _that_ religion out of government. The trouble is that while it is their religion working to insert itself into government they don’t see a problem.
Atheists do see a problem. In this respect there are aspects of this uphill battle for separation of church and state that mimic or match the civil rights issues of the 60s, and the more recent marriage equality issues. These are not the same, but they face some of the same problems from all the same people.
It’s not that atheist ‘hate’ all believers nor that most atheists care what others believe in the privacy of their home or religious buildings. Atheists and non-believers want religion out of the government and science classes for all the same reasons that those believers don’t want another religion in the government.
The plain facts of the matter are that non-believers are discriminated against, persecuted, jailed, and can be executed in various places around the world. A report by the IHEU describes the problem in detail:
“As a universal human right, freedom of religion or belief has a broad application. However, there seems to be little awareness that this right also provides a normative frame of reference for atheists, humanists and freethinkers and their convictions, practices and organizations. I am therefore delighted that for the first time the Humanist community has produced a global report on discrimination against atheists. I hope it will be given careful consideration by everyone concerned with freedom of religion or belief.”
Most, if not all, people will say that these things are not good or outright bad. The more insidious problem is that these countries/people did not simply wake up one day and decide to collectively persecute or outlaw non-belief. It was a slow, drawn out process lead by the dominant religion of the area. It starts with displaying religious symbols in public, government support of one faith, and the process of slowly silencing non-belief and opposition to the dominant religion.
Today, in western countries, these very same processes are at work. Few if any will speak out against them… except for angry atheists.
Yes, that’s right. There are places that think it perfectly okay to kill people who do not believe in their god. Feel the love!
The blog Why Evolution Is True also covered this.
So if you are one of those people that wonder why atheists are so vocal and in your face about defending their rights under the Constitution KNOW that it is because believers and people like you don’t seem to understand that you are trampling our rights in favor of your own privilege and that this is one of the first small steps on the road to executing people for not believing the same imaginary friend that you do.