Homeless vets? Let’em starve


Justin has some shocking news – Fort Bragg wont let us feed homeless vets at the atheist festival

I fought very hard for this to happen at the festival this weekend. We went back and forth for several months. The ‘pro-starvation’ camp has prevailed.

The idea was simple.

Our festival is already paid for, via a generous donation from the Stiefel Freethought Foundation (directly deposited into our accounts at American Atheists). So here we are with a free festival on our hands. We would have put the word out to bring canned food (and similar items). Next, we would drop off the food where it needs to go.

It’s a win-win. Obviously we get a measure of publicity that is undeniably ‘good’, seemingly attack/spin proof. But that’s obviously not the real motivation. We really care about the homeless population, especially the one around this military town.

  • Less than 1% of Americans are currently in the military (reserve and active).
  • 7% of Americans have served at some time in their life. (2010 Census data: 24 million)

23% of the homeless population are veterans 33% of the male homeless population are veterans 47% served Vietnam-era 17% served post-Vietnam 15% served pre-Vietnam 67% served three or more years 33% were stationed in war zone 25% have used VA homeless services 85% completed high school/GED, compared to 56% of non-veterans 89% received an honorable discharge 79% reside in central cities 16% reside in suburban areas 5% reside in rural areas 76% experience alcohol, drug or mental health problems 46% are white males, compared to 34% of non-veterans 46% are age 45 or older, compared to 20% non-veterans [source]

America has left a population of heroes behind. It’s a goddamn shame. And we want to raise visibility and perhaps even make a noticeable dent in our area.

We are accepting donations at the after party!

The free party is at the Holiday Inn Bordeaux (call 910 323 0111 for room reservations) from 9PM – Midnight. It’s the official American Atheists after party, featuring music from Shelley Segal and appearances from the majority of our lineup. You can take pictures with them and give them hugs!

The donations are being handled by Military Atheists & Secular Humanists of Fort Bragg (MASH Fort Bragg). Bring some canned food, or other non-perishable items. Or simply drop some cash to the MASH Fort Bragg peeps at the hotel, and we’ll spend 100% of cash collected that night on bulk food purchases to supplement what you guys bring.

But Fort Bragg says it’s fundraising, and illegal. Go read Justin’s whole post.

 

Comments

  1. Pteryxx says

    Saved, to point to next time some jackass says “well Christians donate to charity, why don’t atheists?”

  2. Mattir says

    Cross posted from RBB – I will make a donation to National Coalition for Homeless Veterans in honor of foxhole atheists.

    I’m not military (or a vet), and no one in the military suggested that I donate, to NCHV or any other group. But the military leadership’s treatment of non-believers has been appalling – from the original Rock the Fort events, to the cancellation last year of Rock Beyond Belief to this no-donations-for-homeless-vets nonsense to the refusal to allow atheist groups to meet on bases. So I’ll donate, and do so as an atheist.

  3. Godless Heathen says

    But the military leadership’s treatment of non-believers has been appalling.

    As is their treatment of homeless, physically disabled, and mentally ill vets. And activity duty personnel.

  4. Kevin says

    Ick. I just stayed at that Holiday Inn over the weekend. It gets my vote as the Worst Hotel in America.

    One housekeeper for a convention of 400 people. No AC in multiple rooms and no engineer to give a crap about even trying to fix it. No TOWELS in the handicapped sleeping rooms (we had to bogart towels from the fitness center to take a shower).

    And a complete and utter lack of giving a shit by absolutely everyone on staff.

    Have your party there, but I’d strongly suggest that you find a hotel room elsewhere or prepare to be deeply disappointed.

  5. ismenia says

    As a British person, the title of this post confused me for a minute. To me “vets” only ever means veterinary surgeons. For a second I wondered how many of those could really be homeless since they earn a lot of money.

    But then I’m in the run up to my final exam and my brain has been overloaded with equity and trusts, which is deeply unhealthy.

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