Home » Uncategorized » Atheists aren’t oppressive; religious people are.

Atheists aren’t oppressive; religious people are.

I know how tumblr just loves to show how sexist atheists can be but as Francois pointed out, most of the arguments that are misogynistic, racist, homophobic, anti-abortion and so on disappear when you take ‘God’ out of them. When atheists are bigoted, they are riding the coattails of the dominant culture (informed by organized religion), sotospeak. For example, when male atheists post porn pics and rape “jokes” and support prostitution, they are still buying into the virgin-whore dichotomy, as well as the Man > Woman hierarchy, created by the organized Abrahamic religions.

Oppression can no longer be rationalized away by some detached, schizoid abstractions about a concept of God created by men. Atheists are just more obvious about their usage of porn and prostituted women, while the religious hide theirs. When the cat is out of the bag, people are of course going to be offended by seeing it, and cry about how it is hurting their eyes. Others want to be able to do away with the bag altogether. Sexism is still around even in a secular culture; it’s just more subtle because now it’s acknowledged to exist in human beings, while nobody wants to accuse another of sexism. They’ll resort to the vague “people” instead, and make it sound like everyone is at fault for everything/we all bleed red/etc., and ultimately nothing/nobody is at fault.

Often, the focus is on men like Dawkins (who can be racist and sounds like natalists sometimes) and sexist atheists in order to not listen to female atheists, including atheist radfems. Atheists don’t have the power to systematically oppress people. Being an asshole is not the same as being oppressive. And while atheists can be bigots, their bigotry is not caused by atheism. Oppression by dictators who were not explicitly religious simply replaced God with the leader and suppress religions which would threaten the political ideology, what we would call political religion, and I have never read of mass oppression based on the lack of a belief in God, or anti-theism. Atheism is not a religion.

But just as it can take a country or a culture many centuries to become truly secularized, it can take individual people born into a religious culture many years to undo the conditioning they underwent due to indoctrination, since many atheists were raised religious since birth or from a  young age. It is obvious that any person who has been indoctrinated with religion at any point in their lives, and later became an atheist, still has some unpacking to do, and I think that is okay. It would be unfair to make them responsible for all the forces that have been imposed upon them, and expect them to be able to immediately cast off the chains that still bind. I also think that mainstream, New Atheists tend to worship science and evopsych too much without acknowledging its limitations – such as clutching onto any studies that confirm their biases (even if they are inconclusive or misinterpreted) and expect everyone to worship science and evopsych if not actually be a scientist (even though most atheists aren’t, they just click “like” on science-y memes). They’re even hypocritical by associating the movement (which has turned from a social into a political one) with LGBT rights, abortion, and so on while still being sexist and (to some extent) racist. That’s part of their development process, and I hope it changes for the better; Dawkins et al are not the only ones who ever will be spokespeople for atheism.

I’m a regular (albeit spiritual) atheist, not a New Atheist. So even though I have no dog in this fight, I will get lumped in anyway, since New Atheists are the mainstream face of atheism. It is time that female atheists speak out more, even in criticism of other atheists. Also, I have noticed that the most level-headed people have been those who were fortunate enough to remain atheist since birth, whose parents and peers did not forcefully indoctrinate them. People like Nesriin (BornWithoutReligion) or Francois Tremblay. “Demonic possession” nowadays is better known as mental illness. And as Motta once wrote, there has never been a case of so-called “demonic possession” from anyone who was an atheist since birth.

If more children since birth were not religiously indoctrinated, the followers of organized religions would drastically decrease. This would be possible whether or not people decide to vote for true separation of church and state in the U.S. and revoke their tax-exempt status. After all, indoctrinating children is one of the ways of gaining new followers and thereby sustaining a religion, and the organized religions do emphasize that followers must procreate for this very purpose, or the belief that it is a woman’s duty and worth to be an incubator. The other ways are: forced assimilation by colonialism and missionary work (“charities” which bribe the poor), converting through marriage, and relaxing bigoted policies for more inclusion.

3 thoughts on “Atheists aren’t oppressive; religious people are.

  1. Pingback: Can one do magick and be an atheist? | Your god is a fraud

  2. Pingback: Can one be an atheist magickian? | Your god is a fraud

  3. You know, I’ve noticed that most of the sexist atheists people complain about are men. It seems to me that it’s a man thing and just proof that you don’t need to be a religious fundie to be a misogynist.

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