During the last two decades many transitions have occurred. We took some amazing, and awe inspiring leaps forward. Science has recently done some brilliant things. It comes at the end of decades of work and research, but it has come. We landed a new Rover on Mars, found a kind of Boson, though it still needs confirmation. We have seen women become some of the highest earning people on the planet. Oprah was rated in the top ten as well as Martha Stewart. That is a mile stone for many women inspired to have great careers. In fact there have been astounding movements forward in vital areas. Cancer research, HIV research, the HPV vaccine, Stem Cells. As we explore and learn the world has made great progress. Then along comes religion and begins to break it down.
What also happened in the last two decades. The creation of the Creationism Museum, the introduction of legislation to teach creation theory in classrooms. The West Borough Baptist church protesting funerals, and more politicians claiming young world theory as their belief while holding public office and making law which governs all of our secular society. The beliefs of Michelle Bachman are enough to send your head spinning, but she is not alone. In fact for almost every state in the union there is one Republican who holds beliefs that might make you toss your lunch.
This is the reason that a secular voice is so vital for all of us. Not just here in the United States, but all over the world. You may think that religion quietly fades into the night, but the reality is that has never been the case. In fact it is only under the influence of secular pressure that any change has occuerd. Historically religion began everything, for the good or bad, and there was a lot of bad. Churches were mandatory in history. It was a place to gather on Sunday, where men and women talked and children were forced to come and listen to the doctrine of their parents. These same buildings were also used as schools, and during times of war have been used as makeshift hospitals.
As the United States grew, though, times changed. States developed and so did the school system. In fact during the 80’s and 90’s there was such a social drift in the teaching of secular ideas that religion began to loose grip, and fear what would happen if they lost their flocks. Suddenly when Bush was elected he wanted to hand over vouchers for children to go to religious schools. It would have paid for them to be indoctrinated with tax dollars, but it does not stop there. Most religious schools are allowed to actually punish students by spanking, or hitting. They do not have to teach evolution and their cirriculmn is completely determined by the school. It was an idea of how to steal the power from secular schools who could no longer lead students in prayer. It was against everything that the founding fathers stood for. It was a complete sellout to the dogmatic of this nation. What is worse, is if they had succeeded it would have left public schools competing against dogma for students.
This has always been the way of religion. Loosing their flock to any other religion, or dogma forbid, secularism is just beyond tolerance. You can give credit to the determination of being saved, from damnation to hell by their sadistic god, and for most of the flock that is true, but when it comes to the rulers the truth can’t be this clear cut. It takes money, sometimes lots of money, to run a church. Plus people who are practicing the work of indoctrination have to get paid. Sometimes they have to get paid millions a year, and more secular people means less money and benefits for them.
Sean Faircloth addresses this properly in his book, “Attack Of The Theocrats.” He explains how church is big money, and big tax breaks. But wait no only breaks, but handouts. Now imagine if they could only get a hold of your children, and that is just what they want to do. Sure stopping abortion seems like they are pro life, but imagine if they can later say to many unwanted children born to crack mothers, and women who died during birth, that they are the reason they are here. In fact it seems like such a warm thing to do. Yet it is a crushing blow to women who want careers and lives. It makes then second place to a fetus, but that fetus could be a christian fetus and that means money and dogma. It might be a leap to think this, but they have been planning a long end game since the 60’s when women got rights. They have been making moves under the cover of night for a long time with the intent to subdue this country, and put it under the iron thumb of their archaic deity.
The secular part of our nation has made great strides forward. It was the wall of separation put in place by Jefferson that allowed for religion to flourish here while the business of the state could be served without religious censorship. The last two decades however have led us to the current battle ground. One where men running for office hold no fear of telling a woman her place is in the kitchen, and she has no right to her body. Men who want to stamp out equality in races, gender, and sexual orientation. The current group of republicans is so indoctrinated Washington is rank with dogmatic delusions.
This is why as secularists we have to make noise. We have to get elected, and we have to write, speak, inform, debate, and challenge. We need to be involved. We should challenge every word that is spoken on Capitol hill, and be ready to show our voices. One of the great things about the Reason Rally was the power of atheists to make it to DC and get together and take a stand. The dogmatic were afraid to show up, other than a few who dared. But atheists stood in the rain for hours. Now that is the power of secular voices here in this country. And still most of the atheists, agnostics, skeptics were not even there. This means that we have great potential.
If every atheist, agnostic, skeptic votes, and raises their voices we can make a change. Imagine 20 years from now if we all get involved, and teach others to get involved. Imagine if you raise your children to get involved. We could turn this country around. But first we have to believe in us, the way the founding fathers believed in a fledgling nation. They did not know if we would survive, or if what they wrote would stand the test of time, but it has. In fact is has become a beacon of hope for other nations who have yet to experience what it is to live in a nation not ruled by dictatorship or dogma. We have the possibility of subduing the dogmatic nature of our nation, and turning church back into something of a choice, but there is work to be done.
We have to fight for tax breaks to end for churches. We need to set regulations for churches caring for children. We need to end housing subsidies for those who work in religion. We need to define what separates the nation from the religion. We need to command a loud voice in Washington. Most of all we need to stand together. We can unite under this umbrella, because we have work to do. We are not doing it for you or me or women, or men. We are doing it for everyone and for the future we will not live to see. We must be diligent and strong, and never forget, we are secular, smart and powerful.