You’re a militant atheist!
All an atheist has to do is say “I’m atheist” and we’re “offending the religious”. All an atheist has to do is say “you’re forcing your beliefs on others, and I won’t stand for it anymore” and we’re labeled as “militant atheists”. The term is laughable. When we start blowing up their places of worship, or flying planes into buildings, THEN you can say we’re “militant”. Until then, we’re outspoken.
For me, you can call me a militant atheist all you like, I’ll just laugh at you. I am extremely outspoken. If someone personally (as in, not online, really in person) brings up religion around me, 9 times out of 10 they’re doing it with the assumption that everyone agrees with them. Most are shocked to find out that I do NOT agree with them, even though they know I’m atheist. If they open up that topic, they WILL get my views.
However, if I’m invited to a wedding, or if I must attend a funeral, or even if my religious family and friends want to pray before their meal, I just keep my trap shut and let them have their superstitions. If they were to insist that I also take part in their ritualistic behavior, I will tell them “no”. So far, I’ve been lucky that no one so far has insisted.
Just last week, I had a christian friend say to me, “You don’t celebrate christmas?!”, as if she was truly shocked. Now this woman has known I’m atheist since we reconnected on MySpace back in 2006. At that point, I snapped at her. I mean, really? Really? Do you not see the things I post on Facebook?!
When I post on MY Facebook page, or MY blog, or MY anything online, I do so to educate (mostly) people about the ridiculousness of religion. Yes, I also use sarcasm, mocking and humor. I have tried being nice, and using logic and reason (it doesn’t work), and I find that the way to get people to actually THINK about their beliefs is to shock them out of their comfort zone.
If people don’t want to see the things I post on MY OWN PAGE, they have a couple of options:
1) They can ignore my posts by scrolling past them
2) They can ignore my posts by choosing “Ignore this person”
3) They can un-friend me
4) They can block me
None of it offends me. Really. Ok, I was offended by one person that blocked me, but for reals, my own father shouldn’t block me completely.
It is a very rare situation that I go off on someone on THEIR page, or THEIR blog. That only happens when they’ve specifically asked for opinions, AND if I know them well enough to know that neither of us takes disagreement and/or debate personally. I have some christian friends that I debate with frequently, on my page and theirs. I will also give someone a piece of my mind if they are specifically bashing atheists. On occasion, I will mock someone if they are bashing another religion while completely ignoring that their own religion does the same thing as the one they’re bashing.
See, I’m an equal opportunity anti-religion atheist. I don’t put down christian beliefs while defending muslim beliefs. I put them ALL down, across the board. Which is kinda funny at times, when a christian will see me going after a muslim belief, and they think, “Ooo, she’s on MY side!” Don’t worry, you’ll get your turn in the spotlight, and it will be sooner rather than later, I promise you. I’m not on the “side” of any religion!
Which brings me to the erroneous belief that I think ALL religion is extremist. No. I think that all religion BREEDS extremism. I think that all religion is dangerous for society as a whole. I think that there are some truly good religious people. Not many, but there are some. I also think that I know more atheists who act like better religious people than the religious people I know. I’ve been fortunate to get to know some religious people who are truly good people. I’ve also been unfortunate to get to know some atheists who are not good people. What I will say is that religion isn’t the reason for the good christians, muslims, jews, etc., nor is it to blame for the bad atheists. It IS however, usually to blame for the bad christians, muslims, jews, etc.
Lastly, for those who say, “But your militant atheism is bad for the cause!” I must point you in the direction of a piece I read just the other day, by Greta Christina – What Are The Goals of the Atheist Movement?.
My goal is to get people to think about what they believe and why. I want people to examine every little nook and cranny of their superstition. I want them to confront the contradictions and hypocrisies. I want people to learn everything there is to know about the history of their religion, including their holidays. I want people to stop lying to themselves because it makes them feel good.
And if I must be “militant” to do that, then so be it. I’ve lost my patience for religious beliefs. I’m beyond my breaking point for religious apologists, especially when it comes to atheists who prefer to just shut up and let the religious bulldoze us at every turn. I tired of people pussy-footing around the topic of religion because of some false sense of politeness. I think we must start standing up for ourselves as atheists. Yes, let people know you’re an atheist, and live your life in such a way that proves that atheists are not horrible people with no morals or values. But stop letting the religious walk all over you and everyone that’s not like them. Be outspoken! Get called a “militant atheist” a few times in your life! Your children will thank you for making their lives a better place to live.