Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

Anonymous
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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

Does anyone know if that making an SSA (Secular Students Association) group at your school is a good idea?

Does anyone here currently have one, and if so, how good is it and where is your school located at?

I'm thinking about making an SSA group at my school. They have a christian after school group so hell, i can make a SSA group at my high school.


MattShizzle
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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

I'm out of school 14 years, but if someone tried this where I went to school, people'd be shitting bricks! I live in a town of about 800 people that has 3 churches! Sad

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random_antitheist
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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

heh. I'm going to form an atheist/secular club at my highschool. Already found 5 members. They have a christian club and a muslim club, so itd be hilarious if they didnt allow an atheist club.

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Anonymous
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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

random_antitheist wrote:
heh. I'm going to form an atheist/secular club at my highschool. Already found 5 members. They have a christian club and a muslim club, so itd be hilarious if they didnt allow an atheist club.
if they didn't i'd contact the governor as that would be unconstitutional.


EverLastingGodS...
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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

The absolute best way to create a an atheist group in your school is to affiliate with the Secular Student Alliance: http://www.secularstudents.org/

I subscribe to their e-newsletter. They are the best at what they do. They provide guidance and support. Sometimes, they even send speakers.

Any student who wants to start a school group for nonbelievers should contact the SSA.


random_antitheist
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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

Eh. No offense but the Secular Students Association sounds to soft atheism/agnostic to me. I'd make my club a bit more militant with events like the war on easter or something. More interesting that way. Smiling

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EverLastingGodS...
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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

Well, SSA is an organized, educational nonprofit 501C3, and what you're proposing is just pulling a stunt, so it wouldn't be a good fit. Your school would have no reason to permit such a group, and you'd have no support or guidance. There's nothing tangible to pulling a wacky stunt; a gimmick can only go so far.

SSA groups accommodate nonbelievers of all varieties, not just one certain version of atheism. SSA would probably discourage you from negative campaigns or offensive outbursts against religion. Instead, they would want you to hold meetings that serve the nonbelievers in your school, host speakers, moderate sincere debates, perform community service, and the like.

I thought you were serious about starting a real group, so I replied with factual and serious information. I'm sorry that you're unwilling to do something practical, but I understand that hard work lacks the appeal of a one-off gag.


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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

EverLastingGodStopper wrote:

I thought you were serious about starting a real group, so I replied with factual and serious information. I'm sorry that you're unwilling to do something practical, but I understand that hard work lacks the appeal of a one-off gag.

Wow, godstopper. Uncool. Very uncool.

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EverLastingGodS...
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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

This is the News and Activism forum, Sapient. If someone is serious about activism, I am serious about helping them. If someone wants to goof around, that's fine, but they should be frank about their motives when they ask for help. This isn't the News, Activism, and Fun Stuff forum.


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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

EverLastingGodStopper wrote:
This is the News and Activism forum, Sapient. If someone is serious about activism, I am serious about helping them.

Just because someone doesn't prescribe to your particular brand of activism, does not make them any less serious than you. Would you call me unserious, seeing as I co-founded the War on Easter?

Quote:
If someone wants to goof around, that's fine, but they should be frank about their motives when they ask for help.

He was frank about his motives. He said, "I'm going to form an atheist/secular club at my highschool. Already found 5 members."

Maybe your SSA info might be pertinent to the OP who still hasn't weighed in since you posted it.

Quote:
This isn't the News, Activism, and Fun Stuff forum.

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EverLastingGodS...
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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

I would call stunts "unserious." I'm not saying that there's no place for play. Someone asked a question about "starting a student group," I replied. The OP did not ask about how to pull off a publicity stunt, or I would have possibly commented on that topic. If someone wants to start a serious student group, then the SSA is the best organization for that potential group leader to contact.


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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

I almost started a Secular organization here at VCU through SSA, I had gotten my start up kit etc.. however due to the fact I work 40 hours a week, and the rest of my free time is tied up in research another 40 plus hours a week, I haven't had time to actually start one. SSA, however is a great organization. I recommend getting in touch with them. With high schools it would be a bit different I would imagine.

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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

Although I agree with Sapient and the rest of the RRS at the more "radical" approach to ending theism, I also think the problemshould be solved through a multi-faceted approach. I think radical approaches are futile in the mainstream due to the simple fact that people are so afraid of change, regardles how beneficial and especially in this country, radical atheists are looked upon worse thatn radical muslims. Radicalism should guide the movement, but stay perhaps in the shadows or at least kept away from the mainstream for the time being, until the time is right.

Schools and potential audiences would be more accepting to an organization such as SSA as opposed, say to RRS. I think that on that level, the SSA should be a way to go. However, once people start to understand the message, they can then follow through to the more radical ideas.

Religious groups have used this method for centuries and it works quite well. Why not mimic it?

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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

LeftofLarry wrote:
Although I agree with Sapient and the rest of the RRS at the more "radical" approach to ending theism, I also think the problemshould be solved through a multi-faceted approach.

As Sam Harris said "I think this is a war of ideas that has to be fought on a hundred fronts at once. There?s not one piece that is going to trump all others."

What bothers me is that the hard work of certain atheists would be discounted as "unserious." That, my friends, is a big load of bullshit.

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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

If you look at what the xtian right is doing, that is the model we should take. They are attacking the issue, through think tanks, politics, social programs, drug rehab programs, they gather the poor and weak, they go after children, they have extremists setting the paradigm while making the more "moderate" views acceptable. This is why I support RRS as well as the lesser radicals such as Americans United for the Separation of Church and State (a group not necessarily opposed to theism, only opposed to theism mixed with politics, on of my "hot plate" immediate issues).

We need to be organized, concise in the message and attack this on a multi-level approach. WE can't disenfranchise each other, so to speak. collaboration and support of the various organizations must be achieved in order to achieve success.

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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

I'm all for the multi-faceted approach as well, I simply think what we're doing is a hell of a lot more fun (at least for me) than anything "mainstream" efforts might do. :twisted:

Actually, if you think about it though, the RRS itself is multi-faceted. We talk to professional apologists and everyday believers, and generally I think you tend to get what you give with us. You want to push, count on getting pushed back. You want a friendly discussion, we can do that too.

Just remember, every Easter and Christmas are going to have us dressed as bunnies and St.Nick bringing thithings or reason Eye-wink

I like the SSA and have been involved in organizations that went through them in the past. Frankly though they were boring and didn't hold my interest for precisely the merits ELGS pointed out ("SSA would probably discourage you from negative campaigns or offensive outbursts against religion. Instead, they would want you to hold meetings that serve the nonbelievers in your school, host speakers, moderate sincere debates, perform community service, and the like"Eye-wink. If I wanted a social club I would have joined one.

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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

FWIW: The Ebay atheist, one of the heads of SSA, Hemant Mehta who sold his metaphorical soul on ebay will be joining us on a future broadcast. We'll be promoting him, and not discounting his efforts as we tend to do with anyone who shares similar end goals to us.

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yeah, but the "social" clubs is what, the mainstream likes, unfortunately. People like things sugar coated. but, don't get me wrong....the hard core in your face approach also is needed in order to set the standard.

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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

I got a question as far as the SSA group goes.

I'm interested in starting it, but I just want to know if it has all the legal stuff in there, as some of my school staff is Christian and would oppose it.


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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

The SSA is a professional, structured organization.

To see how they would help a school's student group, go here:
http://www.secularstudents.org/community/services.html

These are some of the things the Secular Student Alliance does: They provide a startup kit. They provide grants so your group can afford to get a speaker, and they can even provide the speaker (usually a well-known atheist or secular activist). They give you a 58-page guide on how to run your group. They provide webhosting for your group's site. They have an e-newsletter (which I and many secular leaders subscribe to). They also help guide you and support you as you navigate through your school's requirements for legitimate student groups.

It's likely that your group will need a teacher to "sponsor" you, so poke around your school to see which ones might be most receptive to sponsoring a freethought club on campus.

Once started, your group may also qualify to participate in the American Atheists Affiliate program, for details, see: http://www.atheists.org/affiliation/


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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

EverLastingGodStopper wrote:

It's likely that your group will need a teacher to "sponsor" you, so poke around your school to see which ones might be most receptive to sponsoring a freethought club on campus.

Just a thought, start with science teachers.

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Anonymous
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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

thanks, godstopper, I'm gonna request the packet and see what I can do when my high school starts back up again Smiling


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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

Excellent, Joe, keep everyone here at RRS posted about your progress!

Take Sapient's advice and start with the science teachers in asking for a sponsor for your group.


Anonymous
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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

Yeah, well, what i'm going to do is find people that'd join first. I already know about 5 or so.


EverLastingGodS...
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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

Five people already, and you haven't even started yet? That is so awesome! Find out what your school requires, use that SSA startup packet, and let us know how it goes.


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Alright, I should be able to get back to you guys on august 18th, when we have our "tip off".


EverLastingGodS...
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Atheist/Freethinker groups at your schools

Another resource for students is CFI's Campus Freethought program:

http://www.campusfreethought.org/students.htm

Quote:
Campus Freethought Alliance programs and resources may be appreciated by students who take special interest in:

- foundations of science
- scientific rationalism
- positivism
- philosophical naturalism
- supernatural and paranormal claims
- fringe science and pseudoscience
- ancient and modern materialism
- European & American Enlightenment studies
- The American Founding
- ancient and modern skepticism
- comparative religion
- sociology or psychology of religion
- rationalistic theology
- non-theism, atheism, agnosticism
- skepticism, popular rationalism
- secular moral philosophy
- secularism and secular humanism

From downloadable flyers to help you spread the word on your campus, to free brochures and printed posters that you can order from us, CFI - On Campus offers dozens of materials designed to help you promote freethought to your high school or college community.


See link for details!


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If we play the War On

If we play the War On Christmas just right, we could have a great formula on our hands as far as the fight against theism is concerned...

Like LeftofLarry said, a multi-faceted approach. Hardcore activism to get publicity, than a more soft-core approach when we have peoples attentions.

For example, we go out and put flyers everywhere. We preach some atheism (so-to-speak) and hella advertise Anti-Theist.net and the No God Network. So then everyone gets riled up about it, and visits our sites online.

This is where we should really pump the rationality. Make the homepages of all our sites better looking and informative and easy to navigate, so the theist-passer-by can stop and look around. Post links to essays that explain our position clearly (from asktheatheist.com, or Samuels “The Irrationality of Theism” essay, for example).

What I'm saying is, we can be really hard-hitting and everything to start, and to advertise or site, but when people come here, they shouldn't feel threatened, but welcomed. We should always re-assert that we are here to help them. Am I being clear?

Wilson: "We were afraid that if you found out you solved a case with absolutely no medical evidence you'd think you were God." House: "God doesn't limp."


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Nick_Poling wrote: We should

Nick_Poling wrote:
We should always re-assert that we are here to help them.

See the names of the forums at "EndChristmas.Com" Eye-wink

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Church to People Ratio

Quote:
I'm out of school 14 years, but if someone tried this where I went to school, people'd be shitting bricks! I live in a town of about 800 people that has 3 churches!

I live in a town with 7,396 people as of the 2000 census, that is just 7 sq. miles. There are 37 churches listed for just the town. That is 5.29 churches per sq. mile. I had to ask myself. Why so many churches? So I did a search for any kind of local atheist groups, and came up with a big fat zero.
So to anyone wanting to start a local atheist group in your area. Please do it. I am sure that the statics of my town are repeated over and over across america. We need to put and end to it.
Until Next Time

-Andy


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My town of 21,000 has LISTED

My town of 21,000 has LISTED in the phone book, 6 Cathedrals, 46 Churches, 2 Cinagogs, but nothing as far as islamic faith, I am starting a freetought group through the SSA and have found that quite a few people are intrested.

Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people.-Karl Marx


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I'm thinking about starting

I'm thinking about starting a group at my University, though I would like someone else to do it since I'm an introvert. Laughing out loud

I ordered a kit from the SSA.