A director of a South Carolina soup kitchen told a group of atheists that she would rather “resign” than have them volunteer at her organization.

Upstate Atheists, a Spartanburg, S.C., group that focuses on helping people in need, recently offered to help out at the Spartanburg Soup Kitchen, but their gesture was rebuffed by the Christian nonprofit, even though they had agreed to not wear their T-shirts or advertise where they were from, the Spartanburg Herald-Journal reported.

"This is a ministry to serve God,” Lou Landrum, executive director of the soup kitchen, told the paper. "We stand on the principles of God. Do they (atheists) think that our guests are so ignorant that they don't know what an atheist is? Why are they targeting us? They don't give any money. I wouldn't want their money."...

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Okay ... a couple things here:

  • Is this soup kitchen more interested in serving their deity or the people who need help?
  • Since the atheist volunteers agreed not to wear any sort of atheist identification, how are the guests to the soup kitchen going to know they're atheists?
  • Seems to me their main man said something about loving their enemies.  Here they have their putative "enemies" offering to help in a cause they share an interest in.  Where's the problem?

Once again, the christers come off as arrogant, bigoted assholes, solely because the people who offered to help didn't subscribe to their group hallucination.

Maybe time to start a non-denominational soup kitchen and see what happens.

Yeah, the response by the soup kitchen's leader just made me sad.  She said that their purpose was "to serve God", when I'd have thought that it was to serve hungry people -- not a venue for gathering god points.  It sometimes seems that religion is a substitute for personally developed morals, useful mainly to those who have none.  Most of the comments on the article pointed out this hypocrisy, but there were also several defenders who suspected the motives of the reviled atheists.  Sigh.. a long way still to go here in the Confederacy.

It is becoming more and more apparent that Christians in the land of the free are uncomfortable with, or just don't like, Atheists. In your culture Christianity has clout. Conversely, in most western countries Christians are just little 'doggy shits' that get kicked around the park. The biggest problem is the real and imminent threat of Islam, not Christianity.

I heard on CultofDusty that some Atheist in America beat up a cleric and Dusty was apologising for it saying most Atheists are pacifists. I say we need more Atheists like the guy who beat up the cleric and less wimps and sycophants. I mean, clerics are so disreputable they deserve to be beaten up.

A new era of black eyes and broken noses may be upon us.

If some cleric wants to take a swing at me, he's invited to try.  He may throw the first punch.  I'll guarantee you, I'll throw the last one.

I liked the last paragraph - that the atheist group passed out care packages to homeless people, and collected money to help the homeless.

Also, its awesome that there are atheists active and public in S Carolina. Im very impressed!

Like one person said toward the end of the article: the people in need are the point here, not the ones doing the giving.  If that were a barn door, the christian group missed it by a mile.

One small thing (and this is something we all often do.) Especially as atheists and humanists, we want to be careful of how wide a brush we paint with: It would be more accurate to say "this christian woman." Granted, as the head of this group one could say that she speaks as the voice of the organization, but that does not necessarily mean that everyone in her group is as closed minded as her.

I agree with Loren here.


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