• Why Being a Vocal Atheist is Important

    by  • March 30, 2013 • Atheism • 40 Comments

    In this, my first blog post of my new blog, I thought it important to address atheism, in particular, being vocal as an atheist. There are many reasons someone who does not believe in the supernatural should speak out, but the following are my reasons. Some may share them, others may not, but as an atheist I think we can all agree that if we do not begin to make ourselves known, our world and the rules of our society will continue to be dictated by the religious and this is something we can ill afford.

    Direct and Potential Harm

    Remaining in the shadows and being, at best, tolerated and at worst, reviled in the religious community causes direct harm to society at large. As atheists, we should neither feel shame or fear, yet many of us do.  Most of us have been raised religious and even for those who have not (myself included), feel the pressure of remaining silent for fear of ostracism.  Our families and friends are likely religious and society at large accepts a myth as truth and our very existence is permeated with religion.

    Fuck that noise.

    The more we speak out and get involved the more we have a chance at a balanced world. It’s not going to happen in our lifetime, but we are at the catalyst, the founding fathers and mothers, of a movement that will one day shape the world into a better place for everyone. Most of us are raised to feel that if we don’t receive immediate gratification, a thing is not worth doing. This is a very dangerous notion to live by. Speaking out against religion and accepting your atheism as a positive force in your life, can and will change your life for the positive. You no longer have to live with the restraints that religion places upon you and you are free to live your life by the moral standards society at large sets and not the asinine bullshit in a religious text.  We all know that THOSE morals are laughable at best and dangerous at worst.

    Religion is insidious and the direct and potential harm knows no boundaries. From what we are allowed to do to our own bodies to the very laws we are required to live by, it’s all dictated by the “moral majority”. We can no longer afford to sit by and watch the future of humanity deteriorate like toilet paper in a sewer.

    So, I speak out. In my day to day life, it doesn’t seem so important. I take care of my kids, I clean my house, I cook dinner, I visit with friends and family, but in doing all of that I don’t go to church and I don’t hide who I am. If it comes up, I proudly announce that I am an atheist. I don’t go around “rubbing” it in faces, but I never hide it. What’s the point? I have no shame; in fact I am almost prideful because I am able to think for myself and beyond what people tell me to think. I was not raised religious and while I admit to claiming to believe in God when I was young, I didn’t know what it meant. I was never a true believer, so atheism is easy for me. I don’t mean to be flippant, but at the same time I want everyone to be proud to not be influenced by pressures to stay underground.  The more we are outspoken and the more we educate those around us, even if it falls on deaf ears most of the time, the more of a chance we have to succeed in changing this shit society that is currently dictated by religion instead of truth.

    I’m Tired

    I am; I am tired of fighting for fairness. I’m tired of the religious looking at me like I am some evil bitch that is out to eat their children. I’m tired of having my personal rights violated at every turn because someone thinks they are living by a code from some ancient text that they believe is proof of a supernatural deity. Mostly, I’m tired of ill-informed, uneducated, morally bankrupt people telling me how I should live my life.

    Fuck you. Get some education and some fucking common sense and then come talk to me.

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    About

    Stay at home mom of twin toddlers. Well versed in sarcasm and sometimes tenacious. Atheist. Overuse of the word "cunt" is intentional.

    http://domesticgodless.com

    40 Responses to Why Being a Vocal Atheist is Important

    1. March 30, 2013 at 3:38 am

      Very nice, well written. I love it.

    2. March 30, 2013 at 4:03 am

      Fantastic piece. Well done :)

    3. AW
      March 30, 2013 at 4:28 am

      Keep it up. There are so many atheists out there who need articles like these to know they’re not alone. I love the courage.

    4. Corey
      March 30, 2013 at 4:34 am

      Well said. Thanks.

    5. Mike
      March 30, 2013 at 5:04 am

      Very articulate and well written. Well worth the read.

    6. steph
      March 30, 2013 at 5:14 am

      I’ve posted a link on my small (hopefully will gain more followers eventually!) Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Watch-The-World-According-to-Christopher-Hitchens/153779471326882

      very well written. as a fellow stay at home mummy atheist I loved it!

    7. VT
      March 30, 2013 at 5:39 am

      Okay…so what’s your point? I mean, it’s great to be proud and everything, but to what end? Why should I or anyone else care about my moral standing especially after I die. There won’t be a me to give a fuck when someone hurls epithets over my dead body. Maybe I’m overthinking this, but isn’t that ultimately the aim of atheism–to build a rationally thinking society. Yet the arbitrary delineations of meaning and direction that we aspire towards seem so meaningless. Most days I wonder why I even bother getting out of bed. All of the doctors and therapists in the world couldn’t give me enough pills and advice to get me out of this slump. Society tells me I should get a career and start a family as if they held kind of value. Why bring kids into a reality where they just have to deal with the same damn question? So, I think outside the box: money, games, entertainment, alcohol, but those are ultimately there to distract me from the nihilism lurking underneath. I’m glad you seem to have found a reason to be proud and to do anything at all. It’s probably worth sharing, I guess.

      • March 30, 2013 at 1:11 pm

        My reason for getting out of bed is because this is the only life is get and I’ve wasted enough of it already.

        I don’t know what the answer is for you, but there are things in this world worth fighting for. Most people are kind and generous at heart, but misguided. Having children, for me, is a way to raise more compassionate individuals who hopefully have an influence on theirs and future generations. Not to mention my evolutionary drive to procreate!

        Good luck and I hope you find a reason to get out of bed. Xoxo

    8. Rodney Frame
      March 30, 2013 at 5:51 am

      Nicely written article, help’s me understand how to be a little more vocal.

    9. Gill
      March 30, 2013 at 7:03 am

      I can see you’re American (the use of “mom” gave it away!). I find it fairly shocking that atheism is still so taboo on the states. As a Scot, I can assure you, you’d be in a very open and comfortable majority here. Almost everyone I know is atheist. Ironically, my best friend is a Christian and her husband is retraining to become a Church of Scotland minister. We all rub along nicely together. I can respect his freedom to choose his own path without respecting his beliefs. I can’t. In my view, they’re childish and silly (at best). Good for you. Keep being open and true and good and atheist…

      • March 30, 2013 at 1:03 pm

        Yep, American and yes it disheartening to live among such willful ignorance.

    10. Clarabel
      March 30, 2013 at 7:23 am

      A great, well written blog. Wish I had the courage to shout the last paragraph at a few people!

    11. AH
      March 30, 2013 at 7:35 am

      Brilliant. Well said! Im so sick of the shocked, horror-filled silence that greets you when you tell someone that you’re an atheist. Swiftly followed by either an attempted conversion/’proof’ of belief/exaggerated offence, of course. I always pussyfoot around them – as you say, hiding in the shadows – and remain conscious of how many atheistic posts and pictures I like and share on facebook.

      In a way, I have to admire the control job done by those religious founders, because boy, did they get them all good. The pope literally sits on a golden throne, looking over his loyal priests as they abuse chiildren. Islamic leaders cannot permit women to expose as much as their eyes, may the men be propelled into a frenzy of rape. Jews and Muslims kill each other in order to stake a claim to their benevolent and peaceful deity’s holy land. Huh?

      Yeah, I definitely missed the part where WE’RE the ones who are morally bankrupt. Atheists unite in the name of common sense and humanity!

    12. peter evans
      March 30, 2013 at 8:38 am

      Agree entirely, well put, my all-time hero Christopher Hitchens would be right behind you.

    13. Iain
      March 30, 2013 at 9:07 am

      Very nice blog, My Mother is in a nursing home and very frail, so the inevitable funeral arangements have been talked about, my sister wants to have the funeral service in the church my mum married my dad, none of us are religous, I am happy to let my sister go in this direction, but I along with my family, I will not be going, we are going to have a non religous, humanist service at the cremitorium, we are going to celebrate her life, tell lovely stories and wave her off.
      My sister would have had her body delivered back to the cremitorium on her own after some stupid priest, who doesn’t know us from adam, talked a load of shit about God.
      well as an atheist its not for me, and lets be honest, my mum was never was religous, but even if she was, she will never know anything about it as she will be dead.

      • March 30, 2013 at 12:54 pm

        That is a tough situation to be in. You might find my other blog useful when you are in the grieving process. http://livingwithoutthem.com

        I guess, in the end, you have to do or say what makes you feel better and so does your sister. This is a tough one and you have to just weigh the pros and cons of forcing the issue. You know that having someone perform a religious funeral/death rites is useless and that’s fine. It’s so useless, in fact, is it worth interrupting her grieving process for? Your mom will never know and it certainly does not harm besides your annoyance.

        Have your say and see where it goes from there.

        Good luck and I’m sorry your mom is so ill.

    14. Chris
      March 30, 2013 at 10:15 am

      Bravo! Very well written. Every word is spot on! Cannot wait for more!

    15. Logan Hall
      March 30, 2013 at 11:26 am

      “Fuck that noise”
      Did not know that that phrase could be used eloquently, but you pulled it off. Brava, brava

    16. Hawking
      March 30, 2013 at 2:36 pm

      Well Done There … Keep up the good work :)

    17. Garden Violinist
      March 30, 2013 at 3:45 pm

      Great blog. I put you on my regular blogs-to-read list.

      I have few qualms about claiming my atheism. I don’t tell my Catholic boss because she’d hold it against us (I say “us” because 3 of her 7 employees are atheists). I don’t discuss it with my parents because there doesn’t seem any point in stressing them out – throwing them into fits of prayer to an imaginary being on my behalf.

      Other than that, I share my thoughts and my years of research. I started out researching in support of god, but never found any. The more I researched – both religious teachings and archeological finds and history, the less I believed. Eventually I read the bible cover-to-cover. What a farce.

      Last week a friend asked me to read yet another christian book – one where the writer just hashes out her own rationalizations – no actual facts. I suggested to my friend that instead of ME reading yet another book of which I’ve read many, how about SHE read the bible. This made her quite mad. After her initial rant, she appears to be not speaking to me.

      I didn’t even ask her to read Dawkins or Hitchens or Harris. So it was ok for her to request that I read something that preaches her views, but it made her very angry that I suggested she read the book she claims she believe in. Ironic, yes?

      Looking forward to your next blog. You are right. We need to speak up if we have any hope of every changing the world.

      • March 30, 2013 at 11:37 pm

        Good for you and I understand why it would be hard in those situations!

    18. Linda
      March 31, 2013 at 12:50 am

      I find it difficult to know when to speak up and when to say “hell with it”.

      Friday was a good example. I recently joined a CSA, I receive a menu/message on Friday letting me know which organic veggies are coming on Monday and giving me the opportunity to substitute. Since this is “zombie jesus” weekend, the owner of the business had to add plenty of easter good wishes to my menu, and I was immediately disgusted.

      I sent back a response letting them know that I was a non-believer and that I did not appreciate all the religiosity in this week’s menu. They, of course, replied telling me how important it is to have “Jesus in our lives” and how they will pray for me, yada, yada. Rather than argue, I told them we would have to agree to disagree.

      I know it is a losing battle to argue with xtians whose minds are thoroughly made up. I was once that way also. It took many years of reading and researching and thinking, but the scales finally fell from my eyes.
      Still, even tho I am now at a point in my life where I am very comfortable being an atheist, I still question when to speak up and when to just ignore the BS.

      • March 31, 2013 at 11:28 pm

        You said “I know it is a losing battle to argue with xtians whose minds are thoroughly made up. I was once that way also” so clearly it is not a losing battle! There are many, many people who “see the light” eventually. However, it does feel that way most of the time. My battle isn’t with trying to change everyone’s mind, but with making sure enough of us think rationally so that our society doesn’t crumble under the weight of the fucking religious right.

    19. Rick
      March 31, 2013 at 2:06 pm

      Come out? Why? Even though the old guard is dying out as Judge Judy said, coming out to form a better life for all is a good notion yes, but almost pointless in that it takes generations for social change to occur. Blacks couldn’t marry whites until…wait for it……1966. The Women’s movement…how long? Voting rights for women?

      Today? 2013, whether the posters or the author want to believe it or not, coming out means one is asking for trouble. I come out, I lose my job. I lose my job, I lose my underwater house. My gf (who pays the mortgage) won’t stand for it. I won’t become homeless to prove what I already know will happen. One can make a point and remain anonymous. Sending emails and letters for example to school boards or town officials who insist on setting up crosses on public land. Calling people out when they talk shit and positing the idea that they could be wrong.

      This is reality. We have a long way to go before free-thinkers are treated as equals and can’t be fired for not believing in invisible and silent tyrants of the 1st Century. When the minorities are protected (and can prove somehow) they didn’t lose their only form of income because the make decisions based on facts, logic and reason, or when I have multiple income streams and can buy and sell people, then, I’ll come out with guns blazing. You’ll see. I have many irons in the fire, it won’t be long now, but for now, I have to remain silent and I’m not alone.

    20. Sara
      March 31, 2013 at 10:27 pm

      Thank you for this post. I too am atheist but live in a very religious city. Every family member (except my husband) and every friend I have are Christian. The only people who know that I’m atheist are my immediate family members and even still it’s not something we discuss. Reading posts such as yours gives me a little bit more confidence to “come out.” It’s incredibly difficult for me and I’m still trying to learn how. I’ve had many perfect opportunities, yet I can’t seem to just take that step. It’s very stressful. Any suggestions? I’m around religious people day in and day out and it’s time that I speak up…

      • April 1, 2013 at 1:36 pm

        The only suggestion I have is to preface coming out with “You know me, you love me, you know what kind of person I am so being an atheist shouldn’t change your opinion of me or make you love me any differently. Maybe you can now change your perception of atheists because we are normal, caring, and rationally thinking people. Nothing to be afraid of!” Oh, and also have your facts straight when they want to bring up Hitler and the like.

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