Where in South Carolina is everyone and what are you experiences as being an atheist?

I'll start. I'm in Columbia at USC, and I rarely feel fearful admitting that I don't believe in God. Of course I don't go around just saying it, no more than I go around spouting that I'm a liberal or a humanist. 

Most of the times I am confronted with someone religious, it is in a classroom or (funnily enough) out in the bars. One specific experience comes to mind: one night I was outside killing my lungs with a cigarette and half-intoxicated admittedly. I was with several friends and we were talking when a guy came up and starting shouting that YOU ARE ALL SINNERS, YOU NEED TO ACCEPT JESUS AND GET OUT OF THE BARS AND FIND GOD--I paraphrase of course. I was so enraged, shouting that we don't come to his church and drink and he shouldn't come to our bars and preach God and immediately ranting about the hypocrisy and untruth of religion, especially Christianity. Most of my friends are not outspoken atheists and probably wouldn't call themselves atheists, but I'm sure that most of them don't really believe in God, much less the Christian one. Some of the others outside too were obviously Christian, including one of my friends, and they went to the guy and started saying that he shouldn't preach the word of God like that, with shouts and anger. Soon enough all of them were kneeling in prayer with him. I was disgusted. I did however make brief friends with another critic shouting back at him. I could have handled it a little better, but when you mix an outspoken, loud-mouthed, gay atheist with alcohol, that's what happens, but oh well.

I just wanted to share one of my experiences and hear of some of yours here in our Palmetto State. I was glad to find that even though I was in the minority, no one was trying to suppress my different view. 

So please share.

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Replies to This Discussion

SATAN.......I mean Sam. It's good that your boss is a not a jerk. I find it funny as well, that you were labeled Satan. I am also glad to here that you are partially open with your atheism, as I am also. Maybe one day, people will respect our decision to be rational, (rather than emotional) in not buying into a superstitious tradition.
It seems high time Clemson gets it shout out.

I was born and raised elsewhere, but I moved to South Carolina about five years ago. Now I go to school in tiger town which is about twenty minutes from my home in Anderson.

The most atheism relevant aspect of my life probably involves the fact that my father is a pentecostal (a subset of evangelical) minister.

My family moved frequently, so I'd seen religion in action in so many venues that when someone asks me now why I'm an atheist my reply is "for so many reasons." My deconversion occurred, ironically, after i moved down here. One of those "many reasons" I arrived upon atheism wasn't the content of the scriptures. That was one of the few things i didn't question. Rather it was the attitude of the people. The complacency with which people treated life on earth was inconsistent with my doctrines of self improvement, charity and open mindedness. First I rejected the church. Left without the social aspect, the affirmations and mantras lost their power. I couldn't resolve what I read in the bible with what I saw and intuitively knew about the world around me. My frustration led to agnosticism. I maintained an agnostic baseline until very recently. I started taking philosophy classes, because one of the professors touted the capacity for philosophy to enhance reasoning skills. It was when I bought and read Bertrand Russell's "Why I'm Not A Christian" that I hopped off the fence for the right side. Deciding to embrace this part of myself has led me to seek community. Atheist Nexus hopefully will furnish that community. It's a shame there's only 76 of us in SC though. It would appear we need more 'converts' :-D
I'm in Columbia, too. I've organized a Meetup: Freethought Society of the Midlands (FSM). We're on Facebook too. It's not that there are so few of us, it's just that before the internet it was difficult for us to know each other.
Hello all from the low Lowcountry (Hilton Head). Are there any non-theist organizations down here? The closest I know of is up in Charleston.
Hey Hilton Head!  I'm in Bluffton and I had the same question.  Columbia is too far for me to go but I would love to find a group closer.  I thought about seeing if there's a group in Savannah.  Let me know if you hear anything. 
I have a hard time finding open minded Christians in the parenting community. It seems that everyone has great fear for my children's immortal souls especially out here in Pickens. I tend to just keep quiet and keep to myself for fear of someone calling DSS b/c I didn't make the rounds of summer bible school. I've noticed that some people say they are open minded and accept our non-belief only to lure us into playdates so they can preach to us the error of our ways. One particular story comes to mind. . .
A lady invited us to her Easter craft party. We had bunny, duck, and egg crafts no worries. Then she starts telling a religious Easter story. My son, six, was listening intently. When she finished he said, "So just one question, why would you think he came back to life? I was thinking all those men he had dinner with just got together and moved the big rock those other men put in front of the cave and stole the body." She was speechless.
Donna, I went to Pickens High years ago.  Moved to Greenville when I was on my own.  Husband and I have just moved to L.A. just in time for the birth of our son.  Soooo glad we don't have to worry quite so much about raising him around all that mess here (at least I hope so anyway - we'll see).  My Facebook friends from high school post so much religious stuff on Facebook it's ridiculous.  Interesting to see the difference between their posts and posts from people outside that area!
I attend Clemson and well its kind of pathetic the close minded opinions of the people here, perhaps its because we're in the middle of no where. I had a friend who sold drugs around the area, didn't go to school, and didn't have a real job tell me I was going to burn in hell. It started a war me one tiny girl against 3 large stoned boys, yeah they obviously were super holy. I ended up smacking two of them and storming out after I was being yelled out repetitively and couldn't get two cents in. They obviously are going to be "saved" because they are christians, but selling illegal and dangerous drugs to 14 year olds. Freaking hypocrites.

I've just recently joined, and I'm on staff at USC in Columbia.

Former Greenvillian here.  Wish I had found this site before moving away (four months ago).  Would have been really nice to connect with a formal group of atheists.  I have been fortunate in that many of my close friends accepted me despite my lack of beliefs but I certainly had to hide it from customers of mine when I sold advertising there for 8 years!  Wasn't too crazy about letting management know either but I think most of them knew by the time we moved away (for husband's job).  My dad had had some problems with a very religious boss at his work place years ago so I've always been afraid of having the same kind of problem professionally.
I am in Greenville and forever alone. I know there is a group that meets but I am having trouble finding it.
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