I am a business owner with 42 employees and 13 locations across Texas. I have been involved in our business association of other owners for 18 years. The association is powerful and influential in our industry and in influencing state policy regulating the industry.

I have endured the opening of every meeting with a sectarian prayer since becoming a member. I finally had enough and resigned without explanation about 4 months ago. Since resigning I have been keeping a low profile. I would like to get some PC advice on how to explain myself to other owners without alienating myself or causing any more damage to my reputation. Keep in mind that this is Texas and most member are extremely religious and small minded. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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You can make up big lies, but keep in mind that the more complicated something is, the more problematic it is going to become.

I would simply tell others that you have decided it was time to give some new blood a chance, and that you were on the sidelines seeing how it was going to work out. Tell this only if you are asked, and they don't need to know any more than that. Just say it, smile, and let it go.

"I would like to get some PC advice on how to explain myself to other owners without alienating myself or causing any more damage to my reputation"

my advice - don't.  you don't want to risk your business by offending them.  and they will find it offensive, i would imagine.  if they ask tell them it was a time constraint. 

"leaving to spend time with my family"

Standard BS answer, that everyone pretends to believe.

This is a tough one Greg but I agree with Matthew and Michael. Good luck

 Hi, Greg!  I moved to a small town in OK. several years ago and the first question I was asked was "What church do you go to?"  I would reply, "Oh, we're not really church-goers."  This worked for awhile, but people can be extremely (intrusive) persistent.  Finally, in utter exhaustion of all the to-dos in town which opened with prayer, I would simply stand in respect (tho' I didn't), but without bowing my head or closing my eyes.  I ended up being attacked by someone I worked with (in a volunteer org.) very viciously, for "being too stupid to show proper respect" to her/their beliefs.  Eventually, I just gave up on the community as any kind of source for friends.  This community was just too hind-bound against any "difference", but especially to atheists.  My theory is that they fear us.

For you, as a businessman, you can only control meetings YOU are in charge of, sans prayer.

This is a terrible position to be in for you.  The best course would be to relocate to a community which is more liberal and diverse.  Sorry.  There is no easy or good answer for your problem. But I totally sympathize with you and hope you are able to find a way which works for you.


I think there's a reason why so many atheists are angry.  First, for being lied to, and second for the assumption strangers have that we are just like them, i.e., Believers.  Every time we are exposed to this assumption in our day in day out lives, we get a little angrier until we have to say something.  No one wants to be hated for simply being true to him/herself!

Oh I agree with you Sharon - that behavior by the believers makes Atheist angry. Eventually you have to say something - or it drives you nuts.

wow Texas is really f'd up!?!?!? 
do they not like making a living w/o god there!?!? lame. 
damn shame.

Greg Wilson? that really you? 
hit me up at artanddigital.com that's my site. I have many services to offer. and loves me an atheist boss. serious. had it w/the fundy liars... what 10 jobs later pfffft

Thanks for your replies. Sounds like I need to keep my mouth shut. Not an easy task but I will try.




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