I suppose I’ll get some shit for posting this on my Facebook page, maybe lose some friends. Oh well. I hope somebody asks me why I feel the need to constantly post about my non-belief. My family believes I do it just to piss people off, but that really isn’t the reason. I love my country, and I feel like the addition of God to the original pledge is constitutional blasphemy. America is a secular nation to ensure religious freedom. Why is that so hard to understand?
Living as an open liberal atheist in the Bible Belt is not easy. Everyone assumes everyone is a Christian; sending emails praising God and condemning those who want to “remove God from everything”. I usually correct anyone making that assumption about me. For some reason, people find any mention of my beliefs offensive, but never consider their own declarations offensive. I am willing to keep my beliefs personal – as they should be – when I am no longer expected to accept public displays of other’s beliefs or have to be subjected to public prayers or being singled out for not participating.
The purpose of the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause is to guarantee an individual’s right to live by her own beliefs. If our government favors any one set of religious beliefs, then we no longer have religious freedom. Our founders realized the importance of religious freedom because they remembered a government sanctioned religion and its ability to oppress – and oppress it does. While we are far from having a government sanctioned religion, it would be untrue to say our government doesn’t favor Christianity.
As you can see from the Pledge of Allegiance, our money, and our motto, God has entered our government despite the egregious constitutional violation of the Establishment Clause. Our government is making the assumption that all of America’s citizens trust in a “God”. Even if you are a believer, this should be offensive as an American. Imagine the words “There is no god” printed on your money, or a world where no churches were allowed, and all religious texts were banned. That is not religious freedom and that is why our government should not favor any one set of beliefs.
While I am vocal about my non-belief knowing some will be offended, that is my constitutional right. To inject one’s religious beliefs into public life and force others to either participate or be singled out is unconstitutional and unpatriotic. So I will continue to be vocal and public with my beliefs until I am no longer subjected to the beliefs of others.