Way to go, Charlotte — get out there and boogie down!

The Charlotte Pop Fest ’09 is going on right now — it’s a music festival that also raises money for charities. You should go. The recipient of the profits this year will be the Richard Dawkins Foundation.

What, you say? They’re raising money to promote secular science? In North Carolina?

Yes, they are. And the organizer, James Deem, says he is doing it to raise awareness for science and science education. I blow kisses his way — what a great idea.

Unfortunately, there are problems. Sponsors have pulled out, meaning that they had to cut some bands from the schedule, and of course, some members of the public are unhappy. You knew that was coming.

Thorne stressed that the bands are there to play music, not give out a message about atheism or anything else.

Pop Festival attendee Debbie Aintrazi of Mint Hill hopes they don’t.

“If they start going around saying, ‘no, you shouldn’t believe in this, you shouldn’t believe in that’– that’s when I [get upset],” she said. “I don’t believe in not believing.”

Wait, what did she say? I’m going to have to let the idea of not believing in not believing curdle in my brain for a bit, because it’s kind of indigestible right now.

While Ms Aintrazi is working on believing everything she hears, though, those of you near Charlotte should support this event — a swarm of enthusiastic atheists descending on the festival might convince them that supporting us and science is a good idea.

(via the Impolitic)