A lot is being said about the new guys on the block, the atheism + group. I won’t call it a movement for reasons I will explain. There has been a lot of fighting and name calling, back stabbing, hurtful words and so much more going on in our movement that i thought it time to address it. I am not fully aware of every word that has been said on all the sides. Frankly, it is not important to me. Now some of you might be invested in the fight. I don’t care. I am not getting into it, no matter who you can say is the guilty party or how right you think you are. I am sure you all know that when someone does something wrong, and you do something in retaliation you then become equally as wrong as the ones who started the fight, or name calling, or what ever it was.
So lets establish a few things.
There are a lot of articulate, well thought people in Atheism, and we should be grateful for that. It is one of the things that has pushed our movement ahead by leaps and bounds. We should look to their level of intellect with gratitude and respect. Not that it is happening now. What does seem to be happening now is everyone looking for their day in the sun. All this fighting creates sides, and people gain fans as well as enemies. Which is why it seems we have the biggest problem.
I got into activism because people pushed me forward. I am not here because I want to be, but because I have some intelligence, ability to communicate, and most of all I stand for the world being free of religious oppression. That to me is one of the most important things. I don’t care who is wrong in atheism. I care who is wrong in religion and what it is doing to our world. They seem to be getting a break on some fronts, and even enjoying our fighting because at the end of the day we look exactly like them. They have even gone so far as to point it out. Even South Park made a satire of the kind of fighting that can and now does go on in our ranks.
Feminism is part of atheism! Right?
No actually atheism does not own feminism. That is a belief system. I am a feminist, and I know that there are religious people who are also feminists. So for atheism to own feminism we would have to exclude all the feminists who are religious. Atheists can be feminists, but it does not belong to atheism. There is not contract that says because you are an atheist you must be a feminist. When I say I am an atheist I mean just that. All of my characteristics belong to me, many of them separate from my being an atheist, and they can’t be tied together. We can’t force people to be feminists even if it is good for us. Does that mean they are anti-feminism. Not likely, some people, women included just don’t care about the issue. Some of them are against women trying so hard to get power by activism. To each their own. But it is not a part of atheism as a standard, nor should it be. At the point where you are telling anyone how to behave, think, or act, you are a religion.
The same goes for the Gay, lesbian, transgender, transsexual movement. I support them too, but it is not tied to atheism. It is because I am an atheist that I can see that no matter who or how you are you should be respected and equal. By equal I mean have the same social standards and opportunities as anyone else. But that is not a principal of atheism. Nor should it have to be. Once again we don’t get the right to tell people who to be or how to be. Then we are a doctrine and nothing more than a religion.
The men of atheism are misogynist!!!
No the men of atheism are used to a few things our culture has set up. Blaming them for being born as men makes you just as bad and wrong. Our society has recently invested in women and minorities being more educated. This means that the ones who were kept from education now can see the things that all the white males once saw. We have joined their ranks and come up. But what we stumbled into is some highly educated males who are used to being the smartest, the best, and a boy among boys. Now they have so much diversity around them. Most of these guys are not used to dealing with all the diversity, and look I am not justifying anything. I am saying that if you want change, then come in and make a change without blaming people for who they are. It is far better to help them see the value in change, and realize working with them makes us stronger.
No I am not saying anyone gets away with anything. I am saying that the learning process requires people being teachers and leaders, and that comes with patience and understanding. These are pretty bright people, and the resistance we are seeing is the push to do something they might not want. No one who is a free thinking, and skeptic person wants to be told how to think, believe, or live their lives. Instead, hand them the education and let them learn that it is better to be more open, challenge bad ideas with good ones, and lead by example. Fighting and hating will not effect anyone for the positive. It will drive them away.
Atheism + is wrong?
No, they, just like every other group, have the right to exist and behave how they want. If you don’t like their opinions or ideas, or them, just stay away from them. There have been many groups formed, and each of those serves a part of the community at large. They serve the people who are looking for what they offer. They are not a movement, because any time you try and push your personal ideas into atheism then it becomes a doctrine. If that is how they behave then let them, and choose not to get into it if you don’t agree. From my perspective they are just another group. They are atheists, and they have other issues that they personally believe in and they want to promote those, and that is fine. We welcome them.
I don’t like some of the things atheist groups are doing.
Well then find a group you do like and join them. Stop trying to make this a petty group of child like adults who are so busy nitpicking every small micro thing, and do something. It strikes me as odd that someone has the kind of time to nit pick the font on a billboard, yet there is still much work to be done. Perhaps you suffer from a lack of motivation in a more productive direction. That direction might be the religious legislation that is trying to be passed, the social injustices going on around you, and all the other things religion si pulling while you are busy studying the picture on a billboard to see how the color contrasts. You might be an expert, but you just sound pedantic when you have to poke holes in the positive things other people are trying to do, while they cover your ass. They are out there putting theirs on the line and risking it every day, so you can sit there and critique every word, and every bit of punctuation.
I think this one is left for me to say, take a good look at religion. there is some rape culture for you. They kill rape victims. they are busy doing it now while you are fighting with other atheists. Some 14 year old girl was literally beaten to death while you were worried about how some random troll on the net who has more balls behind a computer screen talked nasty to you. Yea while we are having our literary wars, some people are actually dying. Now don’t think I take shitty behavior lightly. No self respecting decent person would waste time trolling and threatening to rape people. But part of their problem is that they have too much time and not enough motivation to do positive things. I don’t think it is funny, I don’t see it as productive, right or even normal. But then I want to focus on the bigger things. I want to see a world not run by religion. So while it is a valid issue, and some people need to stop acting like sick idiots, you choose to focus on them, and give them your valuable time.
All this fighting has done is make it easy to see how diverse we are, and how little we really do have in common. As for myself, I will not get into the fighting. I have said that before. I will promote anyone. I won’t talk bad about anyone in the movement. I won’t let others do it on my podcast. I won’t support the fights, because I don’t have to. I have too much to achieve for you. I do not and never have done this for me. It is not that fun to be ridiculed every step of the way, trust me. I do this for you, all of you. I don’t care what you believe in, think, or how you act outside of attacking me. What I do care about is the future we are all supposed to be making, and getting this world free from religion. If you are with me, then share this. Then tell people you are tired of the fighting, and join me and others like me. Walk away from the fight. You are all very smart people, those of you fighting. You are great minds, and have great things to add to our movement. You inspire people and have courage and strength. Find it and use it to pull us forward. I will not fight, I will not support it, and I will not force anyone to think like me.