Church of Atheism
There are, like, two churches of atheism here in Texas that I know of. I have often considered this to be rather absurd. I mean, what would a preacher of atheism have to preach on? Is there a holy textbook telling what the nongod dictates to the unbeliever?
However, I do understand a certain amount of the reasoning behind opening a church of atheism. The general populace of the United States seems to hold that only those who adhere to some sort of religion have rights in the US. They then state that everyone must believe in some sort of "higher power". They then afford no legitimacy to those things spoken by someone who does not profess some sort of religious belief.
The Constitution of the United States states, in Article VI, that "The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any office or public Trust under the United States". In the minds of the vast majority, that reads to state that no test for specific religious affiliation is required, so long as the elected members hold to some religious view. Moreover, the Christian Fundamentalist continually promote the idea that it refers to denominational affiliation, stating that the framers of the Constitution never meant to say that you did not have to be Christian, just that you did not have to be a member of a specific Christian sect or Church.
Furthermore, it is considered unthinkable that someone might have independent thoughts and ideas without submitting to a creed and to some form of authority. To follow your own mind is to lead into immoral and criminal activity.
Thus, the formation of an atheistic church offers an attempt to promote the legitimacy of atheism, by supporting it as a religion. In this manner, the popular consciousness might see some for of moral value system in the person of an atheist, because atheist also attend church.
However, the creation of an atheistic church has the deleterious effect of supporting the idea of atheism as an opposing religion to Christianity. The Christian therefore has to do battle with those of the conflicting faith. Also, in atheistic churches that follow Christian moral values, as they are inclined to do, they support the idea that even atheists must adhered to the will of the Christian god. Even more importantly, if the Christian churches continue to support candidates who attend Christian churches and promote Christian values, then any non-Christian group or organization will invariably be forced to submit to Christian standards, making non-Christians into illegitimate members of the American populace.
The formation of atheistic religions will not protect our rights or provide for social/political amelioration. Only by supporting non-Christian candidates and electing them into office can we ever hope to stem the tide of Christian Theocracy here in the U.S. and protect our rights and interests as citizens thereof.
I am become death, destroyer of worlds