Tag Archive | love

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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MOST Men are Assholes???

only assholes are in relationships?

only assholes are in relationships?

I was talking to a fellow atheist about my recent podcast when I began to reflect on the “women only want assholes” meme that we commonly accept as true.  I have addressed this concept before but it recently occurred to me that the idea is not only sexist toward women (women are insane, stupid  and self loathing  enough to only want relationships  with people who will mistreat them)  but to men as well.  How? Well, the very statement  implies that every male currently in a relationship MUST be an asshole. How could he not be?  Women only want assholes ergo, all men who are currently in relationships are assholes.

See how stupid that sounds —  how sexist it is towards men?

Are there women who get moist for bad boys?

You betcha.

There are guys who also love chasing down bad girls,  however, we don’t assume ALL men want  wild women because of the males who pursue such types.  Wild women on average tend to lean towards the bitch side of things. Do we also assume that these men must be lured by the bitch aspect or by the fun aspect?  I am willing to bet that these men like the fun aspect of the wild girl personality and the bitchiness happens to be and unfortunate off shoot of the character type.

Likewise, the women who enjoy  “bad boys” probably like the wild, fun aspect of their behavior–they are not DRAWN  to his asshole-I-ness. Only masochists enjoy being punished for punishment’s sake and I don’t think the majority of women are masochists–well, taking high heels shoes out of the equation of course.

Sadly, the very intellectuals who would normally see the idiocy of such a dumb, blanket ideology are the very ones who blindly embrace this fallacious social concept and adopt is as fact. Why? Because the concept is rooted in emotion and ego, not in facts or logic.  By and large most of the men and women, who say this stuff do so for their own motivations and are largely driven by fear, anger, rejection, and/or guilt.

Problem is, by using this concept as a fail safe , the guy who feels he is losing out because chicks only want dicks, is  not going to see where he may personally  be screwing up in the realm of interpersonal relationships. Is he abrasive? Self Centered?  Distant and Cold?  Too shy to be alive?   Doesn’t  bathe?  By consoling himself with the idea that is “those bitches fault” and not him, he finds himself  in a perpetual loop of self fulfilled prophecy, chasing after and being rejected by the opposite sex. He doesn’t see that he fails largely because he won’t accept where he may be at fault for his own issues.  Dude, if we are going to make women responsible for dating “jerks” why can’t men accept their own culpability in relationship choices and failures?

I was discussing this odd phenomenon with my hubby and I decided to do a Facebook analysis ratio on those who were in long term happy relationships and those in dysfunctional, unhappy ones.  We know only  of two ladies who are currently in messed up relationships with jerks.  However, the majority of the relationships were counted as happy by the couple’s own admission.  I have 284 friends, mostly consisting of relatives, distant relatives and friends ( some are there due to work and atheist affiliation) roughly 80 percent of the couples on my face book pages are in stable, loving relationships with great men and women.

Among those accounted as happy, I have my uncle Willie and his wife Vernis, Married for 47 years. On the  youthful end of things, I know of two twenty something  lovebirds who have been happily together since high school that recently married — they are sooo flipping cute, I love it!  Another young couple just had a lovely little baby girl with one of  the best men I know outside mah own hubster…that is just off the top of the head.

Could there be some in marriages that  are unhappy and not saying so? Sure, anything is possible,  but seeing as I have known these folks for years, there are often indicators of such things. Example, two of my friends recently broke up and the hubby and I saw this happening from a mile away.

I would say that most people  can probably do the same FB assessment and find that MOST women  are in good relationships with nice guys, and if you can’t do that, then dude, you need to change your circle of friends, stat, as you are surrounded by some rather jacked up folks!

Just sayin’ …

By and large though, the “all women want assholes” concept is hugely insulting a lot of great men who are good boyfriends, husbands and fathers. Stop slapping them in the face with this rhetoric. There will always be idiots who choose poorly in life. These immature individuals do not represent the whole  of a gender, nor should they be made to.

A

Black Funeral Impressions — An Atheist Perspective

beloved cousin -- we will miss you

beloved cousin — we will miss you

Hey guys, back from my trip and man was it an eye opening roller coaster ride. When dad was alive, I never got to really know the Norman side. This being my first time meeting a lot of them, I felt like I was in the middle of a Tyler Perry Film with my Uncle Bernard in the role of Madea.

FUNERAL IMPRESSIONS

What the pastor said Pastor Haley gave a beautiful eulogy but as expected, he had to preach throughout. One of the things I found annoying was his assertion that those who did not know Jesus needed to get right with the lord because someone in the congregation would experience death either personally or via a close loved one, soon.

Way to terrorize folks into faith there preacher man.

As Sherrie was well loved this rather large funeral home was packed to the gills with mourners, so it is very likely anyone in there could die “soon”, thus fulfilling his “prophecy”.

Hell, I could have gotten killed on the way home with all those crazy highway drivers. Being the atheist in the room, I am sure this would have been a sign that god has indeed spoken. God just seems miffed when people refuse to kow tow to him, doesn’t he? I wish I could have asked this question, “If god only smites us lowly sinners for being all uppity like–why did he take Sherrie, who by all accounts was the very example of Christian love?”

Speaking of which

Biggest hurts Being part of the immediate family, we were asked to view Sherrie’s body before anyone else. It was odd seeing someone so lively so still…and she looked very different…bloated, older … not like herself. The only reason I recognized her was because she had her nails done up. Sherrie was one to treat herself every week to an expensive manicure as one of her feminine luxuries, otherwise she was a bit of a tomboy.

I have two uncles left of five brothers who have already passed. I love them both but Uncle Bernard (Uncle B) has always been my favorite. The loudest cat in the room (yes, he is that brother who would annoy you at Applebee’s) he is funny, boisterous and kind. Uncle B and Sherrie were very close, they spoke everyday, and as my Uncle is an airline steward, he frequently had her fly in to see him at various locations. When you saw one you saw the other.

Now, I’ve seen my Uncle remain strong even when his brothers passed, but with Sherrie—no. Uncle B got drunk as hell and literally started falling on the floor kicking, screaming, crying and calling out for her.

It broke my heart so I ran to him trying to comfort him. He kept saying, “Jesus I need you, I need to be near the cross, god is so good all the time. You are worthy to be praised!”

It was then that the insidious nature of religion was underlined for me. He continued to praise a god who, by his own account, is the source of his pan. This god, in other words, is the reason for Sherrie being gone, due to some divine plan we can’t comprehend. This form of “worship” is what this god expects. “Show me you love me more than her, even in the midst of your pain” this god demands “and I will let you into heaven.”

This made me cry more.

At one point–he looked directly at me and said “When I start to fall tomorrow, I need someone to lean in my ear and say, “God is real and he is good all the time, god is good all the time,”

Uncle knows I am an atheist.

Everyone in the group who had been I assisting Uncle B in his bereavement turned to look at me to see my reaction. I said nothing. But I remained close by my uncle wiping his tears and consoling him. Then he said “Jesus I need you to wrap my arms around you–I can’t feel you Lord this is too hard! Lift me up! Show me your love lord!”

I held back the urge to say “Jesus isn’t there uncle! It is human hands holding you up – comforting you — Your brother Willie, Cousin Curtis…my sister and ! Look around you, you are being held up by humans, not gods.”

I didn’t.

He also screamed out, “Lord I want you to touch the heart of every Norman in the room so they know you are real…”

More things were said in this regard, but you get the point.

Later my niece came to me and asked my why I just wouldn’t say what Uncle B wanted me to and I replied “Okay, let’s reverse this situation. If I was in distress and I asked any one of our religious relatives to renounce their faith to make me feel better, would they? But even larger—would it be fair to ask?”

Jasmine said, “Okay, good point.”

I also told her that if I was Muslim or Hindu no one would expect me to do such a thing — but because I am an atheist I am supposed to go against my own convictions.

I am not angry with my uncle…it was just uncomfortable.

When he later sobered up he would say he didn’t remember anything (although other numerous details he did). I never brought it back up and I won’t. Still, I got an idea of why he stopped calling me to join him when he would corm to Atlanta for visits.

Biggest WTF moment has anyone heard of a ‘dance ministry?” Neither have I, but apparently brothers dress up in black suits, wear white gloves and do interpretative dance moves ( think mimes) and lyp sycn to modern christian music. Wish I were joking. I was so stunned I had to bury my face in my handkerchief to keep from laughing. I finally did however when I could take it no more ( damn that song was looong). Folks thought I was crying, so they kept patting my back and saying “It’s okay”. I was sure I would be struck by lightening for my insolence.

Family drama Sherrie is survived by a sister who has three kids. Cousin Ruth (known as Denean) is an accomplished business woman who achieved Woman of the Year status. Her daughter Graduated Magnum Cum Laud from Dartmouth, has met President Obama and is flying to Paris this year after being offered an amazing job (not even 25 yet). Chick speaks five languages.

Danean and Danielle HATE each other. The sat faaaar away from one another on either side of the pew and when Danielle started to cry Danean screamed at her “Danielle if you MUST do that go to the back of the church!”

What the hell????

Sherrie’s home was broken into the night it was announced she died–every expensive thing in her home was stolen. My Cousin Junior ( Willie Jr) had his iPad stolen from his Lexus. They tracked it to Sherries best friend’s house and learned that her son had stolen it.

Wow.

LEGACY Many of Sherrie’s co-workers came to speak at her funeral. They worked with her for over a decade and they spoke of how she made the office a fun place to work. She had never been later a day of working there; efficient, motivated and capable she was a boss who made bosses day a joy to celebrate. They also mentioned that when she would head funding and charity drives she would gather more volunteers than anyone else. This co-worker spoke with tears in her eyes… could see that she loved Sherrie.

The pastor said a few things in this regard that I did agree with. He said that many of us concentrate on our resumes and never reflect on what our obituary will read. He said that the legacy of what we leave behind will tell of the life we lead. He said that Sherrie was the kind of person who, when they leave the world, Christmases and Holidays will never be the same.

Judging by that packed church, he was right.

Most funerals you go to people are checking their watches and looking to get out of there. I didn’t get that impression.

Everyone was there for her.

She is one of the rare souls who will truly be missed.

Good Without God

ITUNES PODCAST LINK:

http://sistahatheist.podbean.com/2013/11/25/heathen-saints-good-without-god/

In this podcast, I explore the assumption that Theists are more giving and charitable than Atheists. To that I reply, “The hell you say!”…

Below are links to some of the atheist channels and material I mentioned in the podcast. One love!

Friendly Atheist–Atheist Voice

http://www.youtube.com/user/TheAtheistVoice

Cristina Rad

http://www.youtube.com/user/ZOMGitsCriss

Richard Dawkins Foundation link to Atheist Altruism Article

http://old.richarddawkins.net/articles/643999-atheists-are-the-most-generous-even-without-heavenly-reward

Links to atheist charity pages:

http://www.weareatheism.com/resources/secular-charities/

http://kylyssa.squidoo.com/Atheist-Charities

WAAAH! FREE THINKING IS VICTIMIZING RELIGION!!!

moody-compI did a new podcast that you guys may want to check out casue–well this shit pissed me the hell off:

PODCAST:

http://sistahatheist.podbean.com/2013/09/03//

Folks, I am hopping mad tonight, enough to post a new podcast ahead off schedule. I saw a video by a beautiful young atheist lady named Jaclyn Glenn where she examined the dumb ass claim that Christians, THE MAJORITY in this country, are being *sniff, sniff* victimized. In stupid, dishonest YOUTUBE vids like THE THAW and INDOCTRINATION they scream that people having the ability to vocally express beliefs counter their own is somehow keeping them from practicing their faiths. Funny thing too, since there is a church on every corner that no one is barring their way into. THIS from a group who sends out and amens mass emails about punching out professors they don’t agree with in the name of the lawd! THIS from individuals who send out forwards where the tagline reads., “We’re in the majority, so lets tell that 14 % to shut the hell up?” THEY ARE THE VICTIMS…???

Yeah, here’s the world’s tiniest violin for ya Hoss…

Tonight I am one mad as hell Southern Belle….

http://sistahatheist.podbean.com/2013/09/03//

What Equality Means–A Humanist View

SV_SimplySoft01Equality is quite the buzzword in modern mainstream society, but like the terms feminism and atheism, I don’t think folks know what equality means. Now, before I go further, allow me to back track and clarify something. I don’t identify as a feminist. Not that I disagree with feminism in ideal and indeed, I support many of the concepts of it. I look at feminism in much the same was as I do the MRA. Both are sex-centric rights organization with a mission to protect the segment of society they represent. No harm, no foul. I can see the appeal of picking a side to fight for and I don’t denigrate anyone for doing so. For my own personal tastes however, I choose to pick up the cause for the LGBT community as well as champion the rights of both men and women. In that regard, I also choose my battles accordingly. Indeed, I can feel the same kind of righteous indignation when I hear that a man has to automatically pay alimony after a divorce regardless of his circumstances, as I would for a woman who is publicly slut shamed on a college campus cause she was wearing hot pants.

Unfortunately, I find that, in spite of my attempts towards reasoned balance (of course I am a bisexual woman so the injustices that affect me personally will get more of a rise), whenever I champion a female cause I am automatically labelled a feminist. This is strange, seeing as, when I stand up for male rights, just as vociferously, I might add, I am not thought to be an MRA member. Couple this with the fact that feminism has now became a dirty word because of the likes of Rush Limbaugh and even fellow Atheists like T. J. Kirk, and I know that the aim was to demean my point. What an individual, male or female, hopes to gain by rendering my viewpoint null and void in this way, is beyond me.

Which leads me to my focus on equality, and in particular, gender equality.

When I encounter woman hating atheist types who says insane things like, “Well, you’re the ones who wanted equality…” after a woman has some kind of misadventure, or “woman want equality but they don’t want to pay for their own dinners and open their own doors,” I just have to cock my head to the side in confused little puppy fashion. This dismissive sleight of hand manages to misrepresent what feminism and equality are all in one fell stroke.

People, I just have to ask…

1) What is wrong with wanting equal treatment under the law? What in the hell does, “Well, you’re the ones who wanted equality!” even mean? That is like saying, “Well, you’re the ones who wanted to eat, breathe air and drink water.” Of course we want legal equality. Just what do you mean by equality here anyway? The equality most feminists, the MRA and humanists like myself are fighting for is the idea that we have the freedom to make our own choices, for our own lives that we are given the same opportunities in life across the board. Yes, I am smart enough to know that equal opportunity doesn’t mean equal outcome, but if you block my way to those opportunities, how will I know what kind of outcomes I COULD have?

2) What does the opening of a door or paying for dinner have to do with desiring basic human rights? In this regard, the “go make me a sammich” brigade is truly missing the point. The reason many women hate that whole “Get in the kitchen bitch” type o’ thing is because the Christian Right would often say things like, a woman’s place is in the home or in the kitchen. This was the mantra of both men and women when ladies desired to join the work force and get into positions that had been long held by men. The term barefoot and pregnant comes to mind. When guys, who think they are being cute and counterculture, say things like, “get in the kitchen, ho” they are saying the equivalent of “get back into the cotton fields niggah”, to a person of color. Which leads me back to the ideas of equality in the dating world. What are you trying to say with your admonishment of supposed female privilege here? That some women, many of whom are probably NOT feminists, who enjoy courtesies like a man opening a door or paying for dinner shows that chicks really want to be stripped of life options and relegated to a life of making sandwiches? I don’t get it.

In the end, all human beings want to be treated like, well, human beings. That is the basis for human rights. Of course a woman wants the right to choose between being mother or giving her life to mission work. No one wants all their choices made for them, or have their life arranged and mapped out without their input. That’s called slavery. Man, woman, gay or straight, we want our chance at the pursuit of happiness promised to all of us in the Bill of Rights.

The special treatment, dinner argument just never makes sense to me anyways. Equality is not a tit for tat exercise. For example, if you gave me an apple and I gave you a pear, you can’t then scream, “That’s’ not equal–you gave me a pear! I gave you an apple! How can you want equality when you treated me so differently!”

Dating scenarios and rituals are a different animal outside the human rights landscape. Couples can and should decide for themselves how to handle a given situation and believe it or not many women can and do pay for their own shit, especially feminists. I often joke that the men who have an issue opening doors or paying for meals should date a feminist. Feminism is a concept not only based on the idea of female equality but also, female self-sufficiency. Most will give you a hard look if you open a door for them, or smack your hand if you dared to pay for her dinner.

But, I am not a feminist and I love being treated to a night out. Does this mean I don’t believe in feminine equality? Not at all. I deem the opening of a door as a courtesy that has little to do with gender roles. I open doors for women, men and kids. Why? So the door doesn’t smack them in the head as I exit the building. It is a courtesy. Giving everyone equal regard under the law, doesn’t mean we do away with basic civility and common courtesy.

Now, I completely get that it is unfair that men have to automatically pay alimony in most cases, but men need be aware that women often pay alimony to ex spouses too. I do think the laws need to change to either eradicate spousal payments altogether or make them more strictly case by case. Example, if financial assets are built up during the marriage due to the hard work of both spouses, then there should be a fair and equitable dissolvement of those assets. But, if you bring gazillions into your marriage, you should be able to leave with your gazillions, unless you yourself feel inclined to do otherwise (not all divorces end bitterly). However, let’s say a married couple decides to have a kid. The man agrees that the wife makes more money than he does and leaves his job to stay at home. Yes, I know it is often the other way around, but I actually do know of a couple who did this. The woman was a CEO and he had a high paying repairman gig. They both believed that one parent should be home with the kiddos and had already discussed the fact that who ever was the biggest bread-winner would keep their job when they decided to become parents.

They honored this idea when the first babe was born and dude became a stay at home dad. The couple is still happily married, but I can’t help but ponder if, lets say, they were heading towards splitsville. what would-be fair here. Would it, for example, be fair to just toss dude out with the bath water with no means of support after he gave up his own livelihood to stay home with their offspring? In such a case, I think an award of alimony would be fair for a short time until the man could get a job in his chosen field and support himself (if that hadn’t already occurred).

This is what I would call a decent and fair moral decision backed up by the law, but this STILL doesn’t fall under the real of basic human rights and legal equality. Separate things.

Lookit–I am aware that a woman just can’t bench press the same weight as a man…but if a woman wants to try, let her. If she fails in the attempt — so what? Does this fact mean I should go back to the days when all decisions for a woman’s life was made for her?

Humans are not all equal. Some are better looking than others, some are tall while others are short. There are folks who are smarter, faster, bigger, richer, stronger, weaker, more privileged, than others. The idea that we are all equal is a fallacy. Even so, this doesn’t mean that the beautiful, privileged, tall man gets to have more opportunities than the weak, short and unnattractive short man. The short man should have the same rights as a tall man under the law. What happens outside of that is well–I dunno…the general fluctations of life?

Getting back to the dating ritual thang, I will say this. My hubby and I both agree that the individual doing the asking should pay. When I was single, I asked men out and when I did so, I picked up the check. But to the fellahs reading this, please ask yourself what is really behind this anger at treating a woman to a night out and displaying courtesy by opening a door. Do you really have to get a complete, I do this, you do that, tit for tat out of it to enjoy the night? What does that say about your true intentions?

Dating is a getting to know one another, social process. It ain’t marriage, nor is it a fast track to easy sex. Go into it with minimal expectations and pure intentions and you will have less of a chance to get all bitter and claim both sides have so-called “privilege”.

Folks, please, let us stop getting distracted by the dumb shit and keep our eyes on the prize. Equality is about choice–our own individualistic choices–all the rest that goes along with that is what gets sorted out in the mix once the goal of across the board equality is achieved.

That will be very happy work should that day ever come.