How Racism and Sexism Still Persists in the Atheist Community
In my time being active in the atheist community, I have noticed that there has been a sort of subset of radical thinking. Racism and sexism have really been on the rise in the atheist community, and it’s showing up often in social media.
Talking as an administrator on the general AAPN Facebook page (commonly referred to as “the main page”) where my gender was unknown to the person, has shown me how people will talk differently when they make gender assumptions. When we shared a Facebook post about this topic, we were swarmed with comments and as I was pitching my 2 cents with the other admins, I had noticed a strange thing happen. As I said, when an administrator on the main page speaks, it just shows as AAPN speaking, well when I was criticizing some people for having a sexist attitude, it seemed that they assumed that I was a woman speaking to them, which I thought was an odd assumption since there are no details on who exactly was speaking.
What was even more interesting was how some of those folks started referring to me as “sweetie” or “babe”, at that point after they started calling me pet names, I finally confronted them about it and that they were talking to a male the entire time, suddenly the pet names stopped.
We have also had messages to the main page from self professed atheists wanting to know our opinions on race and intelligence, and which race we thought as being superior. This is an absolutely terrible train of thought to be in as to somehow view yourself as superior to your fellow man. Every culture, has something great to offer the world when religious beliefs are cast aside.
We atheists need to strive to be the example in the world, and sadly we are failing at that. Lately my mantra has been “atheism =/= rationalism, it’s just a step in the right direction”; and sadly that’s been holding true. I have seen first hand how atheists that are woman and/or minorities are treated very disrespectfully and the only thing they did was stick up for themselves. Sexism and racism is a real thing that is happening in our community and it’s time we step up to it and not tolerate it anymore.