Why Atheists Support Slavery

Catchy title, no?

For the millionth time, atheism is a lack of belief in gods. Nothing more, nothing less. It is NOT  a world view. Over at Black Skeptics on FreeThoughtBlogs there is a new post. So why do I care? Simple. I’m an atheist, no I’m an anti-theist but I get lumped in with atheists anyway. There is no shortage of people willing to claim that atheism is a world view AND a movement. Bollocks! It is neither, unless you consider that people who wear blue clothing is a world view AND a movement. Bullocks!

Why do I even care? For the same reason that I think those of faith should stand against people who speak in their name. This post claims that American Atheists should have consulted others before speaking their piece. That they should have known that many people would be too ignorant to understand a clear message. Yes, lets parley with the most ignorant of society before using our first amendment rights. Something I’m certain that any oppressed group would do if asked nicely. This whole thing is disgusting. There is no need to educate, no, lets instead complain that there are ignorant people who should be kowtowed to first.

From the post:

So is AA on the frontlines of providing prisoner re-entry resources—the real regime of 21st century “enslavement” for millions of African Americans—to families and communities that are permanently locked out of the so-called American dream due to the legal disenfranchisement of former convicted felons in employment, housing, and voting?

What has this got to do with anything? This is stated like there are no white families permanently locked out of the so-called American dream. This is a logic fail and a plea for special consideration.

Did AA even deign to consult with local interfaith and secular, humanist or atheist people of color about the cultural and psychological impact of the legacy of slavery in a nation where black bodies are still the primary targets of violent police suppression, racist criminal sentencing and capital punishment?

Why would they have to? Nothing requires them to do so. Secondly, prove that they did not. Wild claims like this are inflammatory and cause to dismiss the claimant without pause.

Of course not.  As I wrote in my 2009 article The White Stuff,  “It’s cartoonishly pro forma when white folk, ignorant of these historical traditions, swaggeringly insist that atheist discourse is implicitly anti-racist, anti-sexist and anti-heterosexist because one, we white people say so, and, two, hierarchy is something only those knuckle-dragging supernaturalists do.

“We white people” ? Seriously, that is your effort to be taken seriously? I get it, you’re pissed because nobody consulted you. Did you consult with any white people before spouting this stuff? Should you have to? Is your skin that thin? How can you credibly denounce non-black racists when  you sound racist yourself?

It’s paint-by-the-numbers entitlement time when the so-called new atheist “movement” is resistant to the charge that racial and gender politics just might inform who achieves visibility and which issues are privileged in the broader context of skeptical discourse.

Are you bitching that you got left out? Welcome to the club. At the moment that pretty much describes anyone who professes to be atheist. Are you claiming special privilege because your skin color is not considered white?

It’s not PC to point out that traditions of scientific racism, secularism, and Judeo Christian religiosity went gleefully hand in hand for much of the West’s enlightened history.”

What exactly are you angry at? When you say the word slave in North America, what picture comes to mind? If you think those ignorant fools didn’t understand this billboard, how much less would they have understood if the picture showed a white person? an Hispanic person? A Jewish person? Maybe a surfer dude in shackles would have been more useful? As unfortunate as it is, we can’t go back and change what happened. Slaves in North America were black. The message on the billboard was clear. If everyone and anyone needs to consult with black people before talking about anything that has any relation to slavery we’re all fucked. By all means, go ahead and be pissed off. Just don’t expect much sympathy when your reaction is racist in tone if not racist in nature.

I am an atheist. The AA does not speak for me. I do not speak for them. There is NO movement. Atheism is not a world view. Stop listening to people who tell you differently. I would have agreed with you … right up to the point that you started lashing out at anyone who is not black. Now, you’re just a crazy shit with too much time to talk.

In case you have not been paying attention, those billboards are meant to start a conversation. To provoke a reaction. You bit down and swallowed the hook and the conversation wasn’t even about you. Now you’re being counterproductive. Passing on the opportunity to educate. Respect is earned, not demanded. Rights? They have a right to post that billboard. Be careful how you treat other’s rights… isn’t that what the civil rights movement was about?

    • julian
    • March 12th, 2012

    Shorter you


    Here’s a tissue. I trust you can wipe your own ass.

    • Yeah, always sounds like a whine. But it does not hurt to remind people that non-believers are not a cohesive group or an organization. The AA is an orgaization, but they are not speaking for everyone. Despite that, racist rants never help anyone, no matter what color the ranter is. Whining that you are not privileged does not help either. The blogger in question failed to use the opportunity to educate, instead using the chance as a platform to rant about how badly done by blacks are. Whether they are or not has little to do with a billboard about atheism. Oh? Sure, it did target blacks and religion, but like I said if we need permission to talk about slavery, or to mention it, or to quote the bible then we are all fucked. Unreasonable attitudes should be called out, even when they’re mine. That’s all I did.

  1. Mal,

    I can never get enough of your rants/thoughts/ideas….


    • that’s a good thing… I like giving them LOL

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