I live in the MD/DC Area. For months now, I have been trying desperately to find African-American atheists/agnostics/freethinkers etc. in my area. I am the ONLY active young, black, atheist in my college group.

I am starting to believe Black atheists are afraid to come out, except for blogs and the internet. I KNOW I am not alone.

Blacks in the media, because of the same sex marriage debate, are being portrayed as bigoted as some Whites were during Civil Rights. If we are to really change the way our government, media, and religious portray us, we have to show our support.

I spent 24 years of my life, afraid to question religion and God. I have lost friends and family for just questioning my beliefs and standing up. I know is isn't easy, but if you believe like I believe, that we only have this life to live, then DO SOMETHING.

My email is gabriel8@umbc.edu
Facebook group: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=92973687272

Please, stop hiding behind the computer.

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Replies to This Discussion

I'm sure I'm a bit older than you and I do not personally know any other Black person who admits to being a non-believer. I'm 55 and have been an atheist since my early twenties. I do not post on the forums very often but I read them fairly often just to be reminded that I am not alone. My only activism at this point is contacting Legislators with my displeasure concerning issues of separation of church and state. I do not hide the fact that I'm an atheist but I do not go around announcing it either. I have lost many, many so-called friends over the years once they learned I was an atheist. I was basically forced out of a couple fraternal organizations for the same reason. It's nice to have people get involved with the cause but not all Gays fight for Gay rights, not all Blacks fight for civil rights. Likewise all Atheist are not going to be compelled to fight for secular rights. That being said, it would be great if I could find other black atheist in my area (Southern New Jersey) to come out of the closet. I would be open to start some type of organizing and take it from there.
I understand completely. I do not expect every non-theist to pick up and fight the good fight with me. Some are made to fight, others to support. However, I truly believe that this life is the only one I have. This life is the only one my son will have. He will grow up in this world either with his head held high, confident in his beliefs, or in silent protest. Because to be confident, it means to speak up. That doesn't mean just words and picket signs. It means when guys like me fight the fight, there are guys like you backing me up. Not letting those who would shut us up to win. We should not be alone. We have a community here and we deserve more than chat rooms and private meetups. We should be out there for everyone to see because there are children out there thinking we don't exist. The internet did much to change that, but we still have more to go. I hope that you continue to fight in your way. I also hope you join the community, sharing your experience and intellect with us to further the cause.
Well, look at the churches. They have bible study on monday, choir on tues and thurs, revival on wed, childrens meeting on sat., and service on sun. Why not follow the model. Discussions on sun, drinking on thurs., music and poetry on sat., etc. You get the idea. We need to be something for everybody. I honestly am bored debating theists. I like to talk how we can make change. Some people want to drink and party. We can do it all in one group.
check out this event in May:

African Americans for Humanism will hold a conference at the Center for Inquiry/Office of Public Policy in Washington, D.C., on May 16, 2010. The office is located at 621 Pennsylvania Ave., SE, 20003. The theme of the conference is “New Directions for African American Humanists.”
Speakers will include Campus Field Organizer Debbie Goddard and columnist Sikivu Hutchinson. The event will be hosted by Melody Hensley, director of the Center for Inquiry/Office of Public Policy. Topics will include African American humanists in history, how to attract African Americans to organized humanism, Black women and humanism, the Black clergy’s influence on African Americans, and other subjects.
Registration is $45 for the general public, $35 for Friends of the Center, and $15 for students. To register, e-mail Melody Hensley at mhensley@centerforinquiry.net, or call (202) 546-2332 (Ext. 111).
We really should have a separate discussion devoted to this event.
I just created one.
Thanks! I talked with Melody recently, and signed up for student registration. I will be there along with my family!
Gabriel, I feel you, but you are never as alone as you think you are, now you might not find anyone to cosign on what you say, but I bet some of those around you dont dissagree. However with that being said, its a fact that most of the people around us are theists, some devout, some not, some prostelitizing some not. In any case I agree that we must stand up, and in time some will come around, most probably won't but what does it matter. It certainly does not make my beliefes (or non beliefs) any weaker. And while I quest for information and understanding of this world, for me my atheism is one of the things in this world that I most cherish. " Mental Slave no more".
Now,with that I can understand them being hesitant not wanting to let go (of religion), or acknowledge what your own reason will tell you. As we are individuals it will be and is definitly harder for some. Which leads me back to my first thought, you have to be able to stand alone in your (our) convictions.
I agree. I tend to be the most outspoken everywhere I am. In fact, its kinda funny, but now everybody knows me as the "no-God" guy. No one really tries to convert me anymore. I think its because I stand so strongly in my beliefs. Also, they don't want to have to question their beliefs. Ironically, I was not as ostracized as you would think I would be. Although, many of my friends are non-religious, the ones that are theists, don't shy away from me. I do agree that I stand alone. I hope that my outspoken views will act as a beacon to others.
Hi Gabriel. I shared your link on my Facebook page. I am sure there are some young secular enthusiasts out here. I'm in New York, but if corporations can be global, so can secularists!
Thanks a lot for the support! Find me on facebook, too. Us "heathens" need to stick together!




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