Lordy, how silly.
American Atheists got an information booth at the Conservative Political Action Conference, and announced it today, and promptly had its table snatched away because…I don’t know, because it turned out that atheists are atheists, or something. I did say it was silly.
“American Atheists misrepresented itself about their willingness to engage in positive dialogue and work together to promote limited government,” said CPAC spokesperson Meghan Snyder in an email.
Earlier Tuesday, after announcing the group’s participation, American Atheists’ president David Silverman told CNN, “I am not worried about making the Christian right angry. The Christian right should be angry that we are going in to enlighten conservatives. The Christian right should be threatened by us.”
When CPAC spoke to Silverman about this “divisive and inappropriate language,” Snyder said, “he pledged that he will attack the very idea that Christianity is an important element of conservatism.”
“People of any faith tradition should not be attacked for their beliefs, especially at our conference. He has left us with no choice but to return his money,” she said.
But “attacking” the idea that Christianity is an important element of conservatism is not the same thing as “attacking” people for their beliefs.
Now, in all fairness, if Dave had been harassing the people behind CPAC for several months, calling them names and mocking them and tweeting at them, I could certainly see why they would decline his request for a booth. But that’s not what happened. Saying they can’t have a booth after all because he wanted to tell them that Christianity is not an important element of conservatism is just silly.