Yes, my petition failed, garnering seventy signatures.
It would have asked President Obama to acknowledge that atheists, agnostics, and don't cares are deserving of equal treatment and respect. Cost to government: zero.
The petition was spurred by Obama's campaign adviser who stated that he did not view atheists and agnostics (20% of the population) as a constituency, a statement roughly half as egregious as Romney's 47% remark.
The difference of course is it is okay to beat up on atheists and agnostics, because they don't even care to stand up for their own rights. Why should anyone else?
Rosa Parks is not famous because she quietly moved to the back of the bus. As long as we keep moving to the back of the bus, we won't be equals in society either.
My other post (from a few minutes ago) notes on the first day of the new Congress a bill has been introduced to repeal the Johnson Amendment (the law which prohibits churches from overtly politicking and keeping their tax free status).
My prediction? Lots of atheists and agnostics will bitch. Few or none will even spend five minutes and a stamp to write their Congressman.
I think someone else will need to try. I am too isolated both physically, and on the Internet (I belong to no social networks other than this one).
Phone calls to congresscritters also do some good. It's plausible that calling both their Washington DC and local offices doubles your impact.
On the issue of the Johnson Amendment, it has actually received quite a bit of attention from advocates of Church/State separation. Some of those folks, I’m sure, are atheists.
This is an example of how human nature works. Most of us are more subject to the urge to work for the advancement of a cause, than to work to promote a disbelief.
That there isn’t a god is not much of an influence or motivation in my daily life. Similar to the notion that there aren’t leprechauns. And I’m not going to petition the President about it.
I believe that Obama’s “campaign adviser” could reasonably be correct in his assessment that atheism is no more a trait of his constituency than is theism. Atheists are spread across the entire political spectrum, as are theists.
The President should no more pander to atheists than to theists.