...[W]hile there's no logically necessary connection between atheism and progressive political views, in practice it usually does work out that way. The rise of atheism and the rapid growth of the secular community, especially among the Millennial generation, should therefore be developments that all progressives should welcome.I was originally drawn to the Dailykos community because I am interested in nearly every major issue that Dailykos, Democrats, and Progressives fight for. Climate change, equality for minorities, women, and LBGT, and the middle class and low-wage workers. All of these groups have a sizable amount of support and dedicated bloggers here at Dailykos, and I love this site for that.
However, one of the few groups that I rarely see get much attention here is the Atheist/Humanist/Free-Thinker community.
Atheists, humanists and freethinkers face widespread discrimination around the world with expression of their views criminalized and subject in some countries to capital punishment...Ethnic minorities, women, and even LGBT have their openly out political representatives. Only atheists/non-religious politicians are absent from current American politics. It's true that advancing issues like LGBT rights is not dependent on having openly LGBT political representatives, and neither is Atheism/Secularism. At the same time, it is indicative of the political climate that Atheists/etc face when a politician is more likely to get elected while being openly gay than being openly atheist.
I originally wanted to join an Atheist group here that was already established, but of the ones that I found, neither of them have posted in awhile. (I pray that the admin of this one hasn't already gone to heaven...)
When Vonnegut gave a eulogy at Isaac Asimov’s funeral, he had them rolling in the aisles when he said of the famous atheist, ”He’s in heaven now…”The most common perception is that the United States is a Christian Nation. A large group of the population, while perhaps rejecting this characterization intellectually, take this as a given in their daily actions. When an athlete wins a major game, they thank God and not their teammates, coaches, trainers, or their own blood, sweat and tears. When a company simply chooses to use the slogan "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas," it often faces public backlash. Atheist public advertisements with the must mundane messages end up vandalized, and students who speak out in support of secularism are harassed and bullied. If this was happening not to Atheists but to LGBT individuals or rape victims, I am sure that there would be significant coverage here. So why the disparity?
So long as progressives remain committed to principles of separating church and state, valuing reason over tradition, social justice, and political equality, then atheists will probably associate most strongly with liberal politics. There will be no way [t]o avoid atheists without betraying those basic political principles and failing to be progressive anymore. If there is a problem, it’s not an atheist problem. Instead, it’s a “problem" of success: conservatives wouldn’t launch these attacks on relatively powerless atheists if there were anyone more prominent to attack and if liberals weren’t making great strides towards their goals. The attacks are a sign of fear and dwindling confidence, not the actions of those who are confident in their own success.The Atheist community needs political support for the issues they care about, and realistically, this is only going to come from the Progressive political community, like here at Dkos, because it sure as hell ain't coming from the Conservative community who has embraced religious fundamentalism. There are members of the Atheist community who do not agree with allying with the Progressive community and members of the Progressive community who do not agree with allying with Atheists. However, it is my sincere belief that each is better off supporting the other, and I hope this group, or others like it, will eventually make this evident.
So that is my motivation for this group, and I hope that this community will embrace the Atheists/Secularists/Humanists who find themselves joining this group, or their diaries republished here.