First, a rave: I am most grateful for Atheist Nexus. Since effectively rebirthing myself as an atheist (decades ago, I was an agnostic), I've had no place to voice opinions, reactions or thoughts, where others might share them and perhaps further stretch my brain with their reflections. Thank you, A/N.
Now, a rant: There is little if anything more sacred to me, in all the history and legacy of the United States of America, than the Constitution and its Bill of Rights. The most sacred part of that, these days, is the wall of separation of church and state. It is crumbling rapidly, but the blasts of Dominionists and their political lackeys have finally opened such a view, moderate Christians can't help but begin to notice -- finally! The rest of us are seeing sooner what's to come if nothing is done. Some of us are very scared. I know I am. It feels, here, now, like Germany must have felt, as the Nazis gained speed in their takeover of power.
So, another rave: I stand and salute Pat Condell (chronologically my first atheist hero), Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, Daniel Dennett, Sam Harris, Brother Richard, Seth The Thinking Atheist, and every other courageously and intelligently outspoken atheist who was willing to risk his or her status in society, inside family, and in career, to make way for the rest of us. You have given me clarity of the thought, courage of conviction, well reasoned approaches to superstitious presentations of unthinking individuals. I admit, I had more courage in college, where free thinking in the most basic sense was welcomed and encouraged. That college no longer holds the personality which drew me to it. Since graduating and leaving that nest, I have come across more dire religious discrimination than even the 12 year old nazi boy who threw a rusty dart in my 4 year old shoulder, half a century ago. Were it not for these new heros of mine, and due in large part to my precarious circumstances resulting from religious discrimination, I would not have the courage to come out of the closet. It was torture. Being compulsively honest, yet having to lie to myself and others, to try to believe in something I knew wasn't there, was self destructive torture.
So, I leave you with that rave and know I will add plenty of rants to follow. Check my inputs about Thomas Jefferson causing the east coast earthquake (satire) and the educational trend in America over the past many decades (personal view of history as it happened). They're both on A/N, somewhere.