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Godless of Hawaii

Any who respect critical thinking, empirical evidence, and the scientific method are welcome to join for some informal meetings at local bars, restaurants, beaches, etc.

Location: Honolulu, Hawaii
Members: 38
Latest Activity: Jun 18

Discussion Forum

National Atheist Party wants you!

Started by Jacob Kramer Oct 27, 2011. 0 Replies

A Hawaiian Goes To TAM in Las Vegas

Started by S.F. Zeigler. Last reply by S.F. Zeigler Jul 21, 2011. 2 Replies

Hawaii Food and Drinks

Started by Calvin. Last reply by Sean Lloyd McGuire Jul 13, 2011. 14 Replies

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Comment by Scott on October 20, 2009 at 7:34pm
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qP4h4WwX0NI
Comment by Scott on October 20, 2009 at 7:33pm
That is my favorite line "there are no atheists in foxhole", non-religious make up about 20% of the military. I have never been in a foxhole, but have been in plenty of fire fights, as some of you have been also. Military Association of Atheist Agnostics and Freethinkers (I know calvin is a member too) is a great organization assisting with dispelling this B.S. If anyone tries that crap with you, just ask them if they know who Pat Tillman was. He was a true patriot, a selfless warrior, and a non-believer. Here is a short news clip that should rile this crowd up a bit.......

Comment by Calvin on October 20, 2009 at 8:14am
I thought everyone in the Air Force is Buddhist, oh yeah, it’s just me...

I haven’t had any real religious problem in the service, but I have had some issues with people in my veterans groups or the general public talking about atheist and the military, but those are stories for our next meet up get-togethers.
Comment by rebturtle on October 20, 2009 at 4:30am
NPR just had an interesting story about this the other day. They interviewed a cadet who went to the new Buddhist temple there, which was the only one in the entire military (temple, not the Buddhist).
Comment by John on October 20, 2009 at 2:20am
Adrian,

To answer your question about the Academy, I haven't personally seen the documentary, but I came to the Academy just a few months after the events.

The real catalyst for the discrimination was the release of the megahit "The Passion of the Christ" by Mel Gibson. There were allegations by a Jewish cadet that he was being discriminated against as a "killer of Christ," etc. From personal narrative, I know that there were people putting out fliers all over the cadet area, essentially advertising places to see the movie.

The AF Academy took a very serious look at the fallout from this scandal, and took a serious look at religious (and non-religious) discrimination. I think I benefited from the culture shift that followed.

For me, it's ironic, because it took me 3 of the 4 years I was at the Academy to fully step away from religion, but the leadership's response to the 2004 scandal paved the way for an atmosphere where I felt comfortable talking with others (squadron-mates, etc) about my belief (or later, unbelief).

I think (don't know) that many of the allegations in the article you linked are true, but that changed in a very serious way in 2004. I never felt that I was being coerced or discriminated against in the time that I was there; perhaps that says something for the quick response of the leadership at the time.

I'd love to talk about this more--I'm signed up for the next two meetups via the meetup.com group--would be interested in dicussing further in person. It's much more interesting when talking to someone across the table from you.

--John
Comment by Scott on October 19, 2009 at 2:17pm
The commonality between all of us is that we search for truth. Theist are in search for other things such as consolation, a purpose to live, etc. This is an excerpt from an e-mail to one of my fundie aunts who asked me for a belief statement. She used to be critical, now she is curious. She has now seen me grow up and survive many hardships without the "power of prayer" and "jesus". Something she thought she couldn't survive without.


All I can offer is truth, no consolation, meaning, purpose, or reason to live. There is no divine plan or destiny for you. You are responsible for your own destiny and happiness. This is scary for some, but liberating for me. No matter what failures and hardships I endure, I am in control. I am the captain of my own ship. I am responsible for my own failures and triumphs. And I wouldn't have it any other way.
Comment by Scott on October 19, 2009 at 2:07pm
Adrian,
What I mean about the Atheist insecurities doesn't apply to all of us. What I have notice, usually in people who have just "come out" are latent insecure feeling. Some feel as if they need to hide their beliefs, don't bring it up in conversation. Almost as if they feel they are not on an equal footing with theist. As you know, for some, being part of a minority can be a very uncomfortable feeling. But that depends on perspective. I see my beliefs as a progression as I have matured through life. No tooth fairy, no easter bunny, no santa, belief in equality, freethinking, no personal god, humanist morals and ethics, personal responsibility, etc. Most human beings, as you know, stop at santa. I see us as progressive forward thinkers, not just free thinkers. Unfortunately our world view is ahead of it's time. The rest of humanity is still stuck at the "peter pan" stage, with the "I do belief in fairies"! The point is we don't need to feel insecure and defensive when someone asks us which church we go to. It is an opportunity to educate.

Next meetup I'll tell you about my bout with a brain tumor (which is still going on). Of course I get the pray & hope B.S. But I have used this as a chance to explain how a secularist deals with life a threatening illness and a lot of my family and friends are now nodding their heads in understanding. They are not about to join the Richard Dawkins foundation or anything but at least they understand now and are not critical. Progress has been made.

Scott
Comment by Adrian Ramirez on October 19, 2009 at 1:50pm
ah....interesting. good to know. Im not normally not one for physical walls, but also still strongly support Jefferson's. I just had heard of stuff like that going on in this documentary i watched about a guy who went to the AF academy in colorado springs. I cant remember for the life of me what its called tho. I couldnt find the documentary but found this article. If you have time, let me know what you think.

And at the same time, it brings up what you said, Scott, about atheist insecurities, but not sure. Its a blurry line.

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/10/06/national/main919947.shtml
Comment by Scott on October 19, 2009 at 1:09pm
I second that from an Army perspective. I have been in for 15 years and have never felt persecuted for my unbelief. It is true that the majority of the military are christian so naturally people talk about it and belong to church groups etc. People talk about going to church just as if they are talking about watching a sunday football game. Because the majority is christian, people assume that you are. If this makes an atheist/non-theist feel uncomfortable then I think the problem is with the atheists insecurities. Our unbelief usually boils down to education and intellectual honesty. So when someone asks me what church I go to, I don't go all high and mighty on them. It is an opportunity to open their eyes. Because they know you are a hard working, loving husband, great father etc. It doesn't fit into what they have been told of what a non-theist is. This is how I have approached people for the last 15 years.
Comment by John on October 19, 2009 at 3:39am
Hi Adrian. I've been in the Air Force on active duty for just over a year. However, I was in college in the Air Force for 4 years prior to that (starting in 2004).

I have heard of some instances of overzealous religious individuals or groups pushing their viewpoint, but to be honest, I do not see a Christian bias in the Air Force. I think people have a relatively neutral professional view with regards to religion (in fact, we're even trained to be tolerant of the views of the many subcultures that make up our AF). So, no I don't feel like Christianity has ever been pushed on me or anyone else I know of.

I am usually on the lookout for it though :) .... I'd like to see Jefferson's "wall of separation" stand as tall as it possibly can for as long as I am in.
 

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