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19 January 2008 @ 02:42 pm
I'm Mad as Hell...  
Courtesy of ibesky...

This blog post? There are no words. Just picture a stadium full of people giving a standing ovation. That is the general gist of my reaction to it.

Someone in the comments section responds, "What is it that atheists really want?"

Personally, I think that's different for every passionate atheist you speak to. You can't give a blanket answer to that any more than you can blanket-answer, "What is it that gays/lesbians really want?" So, unless you want to be talking out of your ass, you have to answer for yourself and no one else. "What is it that I really want?"

Facetious but true answers aside- millions of dollars in the bank, an end to war permanently, a holodeck- here are a couple of things I'd really love to have in the context of the "atheist" question.

1) An end to the creationist/evolution debate. There should BE NO DEBATE at this point. Americans need to be educated on what evolution really is- it does not say humans are descended from monkeys, it does not say that the changes observed in species over time come about randomly- and presented the overwhelming evidence that's out there to support it. If the religious absolutely must put a religious spin on the whole process, fine, but leave that to Church. Science curriculum is mandatory for children in primary and secondary school. Forcing religious teachings into a science classroom becomes state-mandated religion, which the First Amendment expressly prohibits. Not only is it religion, it's false. Young. Earth. Creationism. Is. Bullshit.

2) A conversation with my mom in which I can actually talk about my lack of religion, and why I've abandoned it. Mom knows I'm atheist, but refuses to acknowledge it. Any time I change residences, she notifies her church of my new address so that they can send me church bulletins and Lutheran magazines. Any time I talk to her, and the subject gets to something unfortunate, she tells me to pray. Or, if something bad happens to me, she assures me that it's all part of God's mysterious "plan." (I hate, hate, that "plan" crap.) "I know you don't believe in God, but..." No, Mom, no "but." Can I tell you why I don't believe in God? Can I describe to you how much better life has gotten for me, now that I'm not constantly made to feel like a flawed, horrible, powerless being; now that I'm not chronically worried about not being a good enough to avoid Hell? Can I ask why a smart woman like you, who has a Ph.D. in organic chemistry for goodness' sake, still thinks that talking in her head to an invisible sky-man is just as helpful, if not more so, than visiting a sick person in the hospital, or writing them a note, or calling them on the phone? Can we level like that, for once? So far, sadly, I've never been allowed to explain myself. The subject is abruptly waved off or changed. I'm like the gay girl whose mom thinks it's okay for her daughter to be a lesbian, so long as she only dates men.

3) I'm an atheist. My husband's an atheist. If we have a kid, he or she will probably be atheist. I'd love for that to not be any sort of issue whatsoever in his/her day-to-day existence, among fellow non-believers and believers alike.

4) Newly elected officials swearing their oaths of office with their hands on the Constitution (or city/town charter, as the case may be), not the Bible. "So help me God" is easily replaced by "to the best of my ability."


May be updated later as I think of more...