Why this Black Atheist is No Longer an Atheist Activist

When I left the church I felt alone. As I leave the world of atheist activism behind, I feel even more alone? Why? Because an increasing number of angry atheist voices have targeted me and people like me, whose only crime is to be a woman or black and want a place in the world to live, work, breathe free and love as I want. They have embraced people like Milo, who famously responded, “Fuck your feelings,” when asked about how his actions could be perceived by minorities. They fight for his right to speak and say any odious thing he wants. They say they do this to champion free speech. Yet, these self same folks celebrate when Steve Shives, someone who champions ideas they do not like, is so called taken down. This showed me that yes, this is indeed about free speech. For them. They want they freedom to call me any name in the book and to tell me to like it and shut up. Don’t be offended. Don’t say you are offended. If you dare say you are offended, you are trampling free speech. But the take down of Steve Shives was glorious according to TJ, Thunderfoot and others of their ilk — to be celebrated in the streets. I can no longer be a part of any so called movement that does this to one of their own because he had the nerve to call TJ a bigot, while they fight for Milo’s right to call me a nigger and tell me I must be happy about it. It will only get worse, not better, especially if Trump gets elected. People who support the Milos of the world will feel emboldened to be even more hateful, nasty and even cruel and call it truth. They will laugh if tears spill down my cheeks because of it and say I am weak. Yet they will freak when one of their own is judged or called a name like sexist, or bigot, even as the most vile, misogynistic and racist stuff falls from their lips. They will swarm and down vote any dissenting voice on YT, Twitter, Tumblr. They will celebrate women and darkies being put in their place and call it a form of justice. You know, when my father was told to take my sister and me to the back of an Arkansas movie theatre several years after the end Jim Crow so as not to rile the white folks who hadn’t gotten used to the change, I thought there would come a time when the mentality behind that would cease to exist. I thought we’d finally come to place, or that I found that place in atheism activism, where I could have the same dignity and fair treatment as any one else. In 2016, I found out I was wrong. I see it in the ugly underbelly of the new movements that are growing in voice, and being emboldened by political figures who have almost 50 percent of the American vote, in spite of having known white supremacist ties and KKK support. To ignore evil is to condone it. It is why I say I can be an atheist, I have no choice, I do not believe in any gods, but I can’t be part of an atheist community. Too many folks in it don’t want me. They don’t want my voice. They don’t want to listen to what I have to say. These loud and proud folks pooh poohs my concerns and uses jerry rigged stats to support nasty ideals about me. They’ve told me to leave in no uncertain terms–and I don’t have to be asked twice.

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