Is there something wrong with an atheist booth at a gay pride event?

In my local atheist group we have discussed setting up a booth at the local gay pride day event to get some new members- the logic behind it being that these people were directly harmed by religion... it seemed to make sense to me. But I sent out a newsletter saying "okay this is what we're working on right now and we need donations desperately" one of those things was the booth (among a couple other things including a billboard and protesting our local city council who have decided to pray before meetings now) and I got a huge huge backlash of people telling me that we shouldn't get involved with gay people.. it was too controversial.. that i was trying to force my beliefs on them- that i just had an agenda because i am bisexual.. we even had about half a dozen people leave. So what are your thoughts on leaving out lgbt issues and the like from an atheist group? Some people even said if we did a gay pride booth then we should do a pro life booth.. again, what are your thoughts on this? I could really use some advice.. It just seems like specifically not doing this booth is saying "oh no, we can't get involved with *those* people". I should also add that about half of the people who spoke up about it were for the booth and half were against it (it was about 45% for and 55% against).

I try very hard to have activities for everyone and I know that not everyone will want to attend every meeting- some want a social group, some want an activist group.. we have things like this booth, the billboard, the city council thing, as well as plans for a helping the homeless program, adopt a highway, etc and we also have bowling nights, movie nights, dinner nights, and backyard BBQ's for people who just want to have some social time with non religious people.

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i suppose my agenda just doesn't mesh with theirs then :-/ i don't know.. should i make this a liberal atheist group or an atheist group for everyone? bigots and all?
Because the point isn't that we're trying to be activists for the gay community- and that's exactly what the members seem to be afraid of.. we're just trying to say "hey- it's okay to be gay and an atheist because we don't have a stupid book condemning you" Doing this with just some friends would be great, but as a group activity it might not go over well.
you may be diluting your efforts if you also "tackle" the gay issue.


How? I thought Heather was looking to set up a booth for outreach; to get new members.

I'm also curious to know why you think it's odd that Ayn Rand was homophobic?

It's not an issue of "gay rights" its an issue of civil rights. I'd have been thrilled to death if an atheist or other non-theist group showed up at any Pride events to do outreach. Isolation sucks.
More than being Atheist, Rand considered herself reasonable and "objective"-ist. How does homophobia fit in with those concepts, or is this just an example of rank hypocrisy?
wow- yeah, i really don't get it. even if she considered it unnatural: who the fuck cares? If she had any electronic device, if her house was built by machines, if she ever received medical care.. this is all unnatural but she wasn't speaking out against her microwave. wtf?
I thought Ayn Rand was all about technology and even liked pollution b/c it was a sign of mankind's glorious capitalist progress--or something like that. (She's a perfect example of someone who had a traumatic experience in one lifestyle and reacted by being as opposite as she possibly could.) Looks like she fell into the "I find it weird or gross, therefore it's morally wrong" trap, too.
I'm not "tackling" the gay issue- i'm just treating them as normal people. We have a constitution in the works but it doesn't really talk about guiding principles. it's never been an issue until now but we're planning on working on that over the next few committee meetings.
off topic but i find it funny that almost every woman i have known that claimed to be bi-sexual later denied or retracted it as soon as they fell in love with a man and almost every woman that claimed to be a lesbian i have known was bisexual. when they are around their same sex friends they lie for social acceptance or to appease people or a mate or spouse. social norms tend to rule people lives even though they know about it and dislike it.
i have no issue with going to a gay night club except when gay men annoy men or leaving I fear some lunatic with assault me or shoot me. shunning in public is sad but it is the way it is. i love goth/industrial music but find people that dress the part very strange. i do not socialize with them except in the clubs. i would socialize with a homosexual in public then someone that dresses like Marilyn manson in public.

it is like when people lie about religion. i skirt my atheism around religious people. is it a lie or omission? or lies by omission?

i think that some people do not know who they are or what they stand for and do not really about the buck the system.
i would not want to sit at a booth at a gay pride parade because i do not want to see foolishness. i do not think i have met a homosexual under the age of 35 that i can even see as being conventional. do not understand unconventional people.

so to sum it all up
i do not think it is really their sexual orientation that is the problem, it is the culture they have issues with.
haha.. strange. As far as how people look I'll associate with anyone in public.. goth, trans, prep.. my ex gf had a shaved head (which i hated) and we got a lot of strange looks.

Personally every gay or straight person I know- when they're drunk or comfortable enough with me, will admit they're "bi curious". That's men and women, feminine and masculine. Unfortunately there are very few studies on bisexuality. I know some "ex bisexuals" and it infuriates me.. mostly because they claim to be completely straight now that they're with the "right" person and they get super religious and condemn other gays or bisexuals.

I'm not sure what you mean by saying you don't want to see foolishness? Or even what you mean by conventional. Of the gay pride events I've been too almost every single person dressed "normally" as I'm assuming that's what you mean.

As far as understanding unconventional people- some people are just unique. I have purple hair right now. Why? because I like it and therefore there's no reason not to have it. I like some goth stuff and some steampunk stuff and some more fashionista type stuff. Again, I like it so why not wear it? The way a person presents themselves is effected by and effects their mood and personality. For example, if people are depressed they tend to wear black and gray- sometimes completely subconsciously. If a person feels out of place they're more likely to dress out of place- punk, goth, fairy wings or glitter.. whatever. People take that which they feel bad about- being different or out of place for example- and accentuate it- it's a self medicating type of thing though most people don't understand why they do it. It's kind of a middle finger to everyone and hey- why should everyone have to be common and status quo? I can't even imagine how boring the world would be if everyone dressed in polos and khakis all the time.

It seems you have some personal issues with accepting people :-/
As a bisexually-oriented serial monogamous, I think you're doing a wonderful thing. At the gay pride parade in Atlanta, pretty close to 70% of all the floats and kiosks are religious - a fact I despise. I wish I had the gumption to do the same here. Kudos!
Hey I'm a gaytheist living in NC and I think the booth is a great idea. Gays and Atheists are both minority groups here and both groups are largely misunderstood and demonized by fundamentalists. I understand that not all gays like atheists and not all atheists like gays, but my experience in the gay and atheist communities is that we are more capable of putting aside our differences and working together than most religious people because we have to do so every day of our lives. There are a lot of gay people out there who are lonely when it comes to their "religious" beliefs and knowing that there are groups of people that are similar to themselves can be helpful. Atheists should get their name out there for the gay community just like any other religious/philosophical group. Good luck!
I think it would be the perfect place for it. The gay community has no reason to support religion

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