American Atheists cares about feminism and social justice

I mentioned PZ’s post about Silverman v Vacula on Twitter. (PZ is on his way to Romania. Jeez. I felt all exotic going to DC.) Dave Muscato also mentioned it. First he quoted this part.

How much do I appreciate it? With my dollars. My wife is going to sign us up for a lifetime membership in American Atheists while I’m away. It’s not a casual investment, so not everyone can do that, but you could send them a donation to let the organization know that you like a leader with a spine.

That’s a big deal, a lifetime membership. They get special treatment at the AA convention. (Like what? Well, I forget. A shout-out, I think. Applause. Admiration.)

Dave M went on:

The staff at American Atheists headquarters wants to take a moment, on behalf of our volunteers, Regional Directors, members, and atheists nationwide, to thank PZ publicly for his support of our president and our organization, and for standing up for positive values in the broader atheism movement.

One of the things that attracted me to working for American Atheists is our overwhelming dedication to equality, including feminism, within the broader context of the atheism activism work that we do but also in general. American Atheists was the first major atheist organization to adopt a harrassment policy for conferences, and it’s something we take very seriously. We care about all of our members and want everyone, atheist or not, activist or not, to feel comfortable at all times.

We are very proud to welcome PZ and his wife as Life Members. Although American Atheists’ mission is fighting discrimination against atheists, advocating for atheist civil rights, and addressing issues of First Amendment public policy, we care very much about feminism & social justice in the atheist activism movement and how these issues relate to and involve individuals involved in our collective efforts.

Yeah. Well, you know what? That makes me feel good.


  1. Woo_Monster, Sniffer of Starfarts says

    I was going to say this in another thread, but it fits better here, thank you Dave Muscato. The atheist community has many principled people. Thanks to everyone who stands up to support victims of harassment at bigoted assholery.

  2. says

    I joined American Atheists today, too. I think showing real support for organizations who make the effort like Dave Silverman and AA have done is the way to build a movement with staying power. Not everyone can donate money, but I hope everyone with a twitter account or blog will give them a shout out.

  3. says

    I’m wondering when the first slime will rise and complain about how unfair it is for people to decide that they would rather send their* money to AA than CFI now. Because that’s like, I don’t know, starving off the Palestinians or something….
    *After all we’re talking about people who take umbrage at folks spending their money on Greta Christina’s welfare

  4. Rieux says

    I note that the current version of Muscato’s post has been amended to refer to Mrs. Myers by her name—Mary—rather than “and his wife.” (“Theme to Gilligan’s Island” this ain’t.) A reference-by-name to Mary has also been added to the first sentence of the passage in Ophelia’s second blockquote.

    These revisions seem to me very good ideas. Well done again, Mr. Muscato.

  5. daniellavine says


    I had the same thought. I read “We Have Always Fought” after PZ suggested it and then today noticed Daniel Dennett using a quote by “the daughter of a good friend of mine, a computer scientist” and thought it was strange that he noted the profession of the father of the person who originated the quote. This is a rather subtle point but/and it’s awesome to see Muscato’s sensitivity to it.

    (And not really intended as a criticism of Dennett since it is a subtle issue.)

  6. ewanmacdonald says

    I love Ron Lindsay’s posts. They are like Escher drawings. Nothing leads quite where it should.

    “To be clear, I still firmly believe Ms. Watson’s blog post mischaracterizes my talk…”

    Literally the next paragraph:

    “As to my May 17 talk, I have nothing to say.”

    Pick one, Ron.

    “The CFI board will decide whether my talk was contemptuous of women, as some have alleged,”

    So the organization that Ron Lindsay heads will ‘decide’ (his word) whether his talk was contemptuous of women. The CFI decides; everyone else alleges.

    Presumably allowing the remaining 6-and-a-bit billion people on the planet some mental autonomy is mission creep.

  7. daniellavine says

    OB, I’m sorry I shouldn’t have put that in quotes since I was paraphrasing. I got the impression from the way Dennett actually phrased it that it was the father who was a computer scientist.

  8. says

    Yah! For PZ and Mary.
    Yah! For Dave Silverman.
    Yah! For American Atheists.

    It may be in the long run, though I hope something significant happens sooner, but hopefully CFI will get a clue. Kowtowing to a tiny number of online atheists at the expense of women’s rights is not cool. CFI facing this backlash from many individuals, as well as orgs like AA and Secular Woman will hopefully be another (big?) step in ostracizing those elements in our community that do not support equality for all. Vacula, Porter and their insipid ilk might be’brave heroes’ (how much arrogance and lack of selfawareness do you need to call yourself that?), but are they prepared to now add AA and Secular Woman on their list of targets of harassment? They just don’t think. They embody “I got mine, fuck you”. How many more people and orgs have to denounce these people and their actions-unequivocally-before they take a long, hard look in the mirror?

    Especially since NOTHING has happened to them. They get called bad words and aren’t invited to Pharyngula or Atheism+. Oh, boo hoo. Does the KKK cry about not being invited to an NAACP meeting?
    They haven’t lost their jobs or homes.
    They haven’t been silenced. FFS, nothing seems to make them shut up. There are no jack booted thugs coming to their homes and preventing them from talking (and NO ONE on the feminist side has suggested anything close to this. “Shut up you assholes” is about as far it goes.)

  9. Steve Caldwell says

    This useful bit of info is on the American Atheist web site:

    American Atheists is pleased to offer a monthly payment plan to make Life Membership more affordable.

    And it also says one can upgrade one’s level of life membership by paying the difference between one level and the next.


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