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All the atheists in Congress

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Almost halfway there. Paypal email DarkSydOtheMoon-at-aol/dot-com.

HuffPo has a funny piece up promising a pic of all the atheists in Congress. It goes to a video of a cat. Which is why you should kick in a few bucks to that Paypal logo up there and send me to Congress to clean the woo up! allow me to blog another month and bitch about it. But the article did show one courageous congressman has outed himself:

HuffPo — For purposes of demonstration, however, the cat can represent former Rep. Pete Stark (D-Calif.), who left Congress in 2012 as its only avowed atheist. Much like the flying feline, he fell a bit short of his mark after having his legs taken out from under him by another Democrat, thanks to California’s “top-two” primary election system. A few months after retiring, former Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) also announced his nonbeliever status, a declaration he made more than 25 years after coming out as the first openly gay member of Congress. …

The total lack of atheist congressional representation is somewhat surprising in the broader context of nationwide faith and non-faith trends. The latest Pew poll on religion found that out of nearly 20 percent of Americans who call themselves unaffiliated, 2.4 percent identify as atheists. Another 3.3 percent are agnostics, and about 14 percent described their religious beliefs as “nothing in particular.” More than a quarter of those “nothing in particular” respondents said they don’t believe in God or a universal spirit.

While other polls have similarly shown a growth in secular beliefs as the unaffiliated trend away from organized religion, trust of atheists remains a key hurdle to getting those views represented in public office.

We have no representation at all, and isn’t it telling that Frank felt safe to come out as gay in 1987, but figured it was best to stay in the atheist closet until he left the House in the 21st century?

Comments

  1. leftwingfox says

    Well, to be fair, It’s harder to stay closeted as a gay man when your ex-lover is shopping details of your relationship to the media.

  2. khms says

    We have no representation at all

    None you know about, but yes. This is not particularly surprising – the same voting system that keeps you in a two party system means that people running for a platform that is unpopular to the majority won’t be elected, even if the minority has enough voters nationwide for a seat or more – as long as they don’t have those votes in one district.

    Trying to avoid parties by ignoring their existence pretty much made you into party slaves.

    Personally, I think that every true democracy must have built-in minority protection – and that means proportional representation (and a number of other things, too, of course).

    Otherwise, minorities will have a hard time not being counted as “other“.

  3. StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return! says

    Well that’s only just behind the female representation in our new (& much lamented) Australian parliament where Tony “Captain Catholic” / “Mad Monk” / &%$##@@!#R%#!@! Abbott has recreated hsi old monastry by appointing 19 blokes and a Bishop* as his cabinet.

    * Namely Julie Bishop the one and only women present. Julia Gillard was so right to call this misogynist a misogynist.

    Bit of a tangent to the main post I know, hope that’s okay.

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