feminist atheist

It’s always strange to me when people say that the Abrahamic God is genderless, but he just happens to use male pronouns and be referred to as the Father, not to mention that he came to Earth as a man in the form of Jesus. Trying to justify making your only god male is one thing, but claiming that he has no gender despite being very obviously gendered is a whole other kind of mental gymnastics that I just can’t fathom.

The Problem with Atheists

[Before anyone gets mad, #NotAllAtheists.]

I am an atheist. More specifically, an agnostic atheist. I would even go as far as to say I am an anti-theist. I do not like religion. I don’t respect religion. I’d be happy to see religion go away for good. 

That being said, the atheist “community”, if you can call it a community at all, has some serious issues. I figure taking a look at it from an atheist perspective might be interesting or even useful.  

Atheists are angry. Atheists are frustrated. The worst part is that we have every right to be. From our perspective, we’re living in a world that rejects logic and reason for faith. Personally, I was formerly religious and so were many other atheists. This gives us this sensation that we’ve been lied to, maybe even brainwashed.This itself is not a problem. 

The problem is that, due to our anger and frustration, we end up acting on emotion. Despite many of us worshiping at the altar of logic and reason or skepticism itself, we end up becoming what we hate.

We become angry with innocent people. People who, for various reasons, are wrapped up in religion. People who, like us, just want to live their lives. When we lash out at these people, we are doing what we often accuse religious people of doing to us. We’re bullying them. We’re pushing them, against their will, to (dis)believe something that they don’t want to.

Again, I want to make it very clear, this is not all atheists! I certainly try my best not to be that way and I’ve witnessed many other atheists who do even better than myself. Being an atheist doesn’t make you inherently anything, it simply makes you someone who doesn’t believe.

This post is for those who can’t pull their head out of their ass long enough to realize religious people are as worthy of being treated with respect! You gotta get it together. Whether we like it or not, all atheist get lumped together and you are making us all look bad. I can’t stop you from doing so, it’s your right to freedom of speech, but I’m making a plea.

Consider that there is more to life than being correct.

If you consider yourself a member of a group or organization, including a church, that is actively homophobic, you are still complicit in their homophobia. The fact that you personally don’t do homophobic stuff is irrelevant. By attending mass and identifying yourself as a member of that group, you are saying that you agree with homophobia, or that you just don’t care about gay people enough that homophobia is a deal breaker for you. When you give them money in the collection basket every week, you are actively choosing to support homophobia financially. That isn’t okay.

Atheism: Real Life VS Christian Movies

Real life:

“Did you go to that church downtown last week?”

“Never have, actually. I’m an atheist.”

“Oh, sorry.”

“No biggie. What happened?”

“Well, the funniest thing happened last Sunday…”

Christian movies:

“Did you go to that church downtown last week?”

“NO I DIDN’T!!! I’M AN ATHEIST YOU DUMB PIECE OF SHIT!!! YOU RELIGIOUS PEOPLE ARE SO DAMN ANNOYING, SHOVING YOUR FUCKIN’ RELIGION DOWN OUR THROATS EVERY CHANCE YOU GET!!! GO ROT IN THE HELL THAT DOESN’T EXIST, YOU THEIST GARBAGE!!!!!1!!1!!1!!”

If only one person in the world held down a terrified, struggling, screaming little girl, cut off her genitals with a septic blade, and sewed her back up, leaving only a tiny hole for urine and menstrual flow, the only question should be how severely that person should be punished, and if the death penalty would be sufficient. But when millions of people do this suddenly it becomes “culture” and therefor magically becomes less horrible, and is even defended by western “moral” thinkers, even feminists.
—  Donald Symons

Malak Alshehri, Saudi woman arrested for not wearing a abaya in public. Where’s the feminist outrage?! Hey feminists where tf are you?? Can you here me? Do you care? Does your “intersectional” “feminism” include me? 🙆🏻 I hate to break it to you but you’re not feminist and we ex Muslim women are going to reclaim feminism from you.

You Know What Breaks My Heart?

Yesterday I was at a family dinner. I have a huge family and most my cousins are girls with their own batch of kids (since all my girl cousins are married). I was sitting there between them (the only single girl in the family) and for the first time ever I had nothing to talk about with them. 

It was sad that I didn’t fit in. It wasn’t sad because I wasn’t married. It was sad because those cousins who were once HAPPY and carefree were running after their kids who were destroying everything in sight with a pained expression on their face. They were sitting listening to their husbands joke about sexist things. They had nothing more to talk about than baby formulas, husband troubles, how badly their in laws treat them. 

And when they finally saw me sitting quietly among all that craziness, they asked me about my job and my car. When I started talking about how I have this new exciting project and how I’ve finally started driving alone and how much I enjoy it even in Pakistani traffic, I see their faces fall and they looking over to their husbands and quietly whispering about how I am doing something so different and they wish they the guts to drive but they dont. They wish they had pursued a career but they havent. They wish they were free, but they are not.

And then they go back to talking about mommy things and bitching about independent girls behind my back because thats the only thing that makes them feel better about themselves.  

It breaks my heart what women have been reduced to by culture and religion. 

As a final post on this “discourse” sideblog, I want to talk about something not specific to the ace discourse, but rather something that cuts across all groups, all people online or off. Whatever you are arguing or whatever side you are on, we as humans are prone to confirmation bias and the online world is no better place than to create echo-chambers.

I have always felt that teaching myself skepticism was one of the best things I could have done for myself. It was during that time I was also active in the atheist community, online and off. The skeptic and atheist community often overlapped and it was from these groups that I became a feminist.

New atheist groups often wonder why they are largely made up of white men, and if you challenge them on their sexism/racism etc… it becomes obvious why, which is what happened to me. I was the darling women on a majority male forum agreeing with them that religion is the source of all evil, therefore exempting atheist men from things like sexism and all other bigotries. It wasn’t until an argument about rape culture came up that I saw just how deeply misogynist some of these men were.

So my venture into skeptic and atheist groups not only taught me the scientific process and logical fallacies but it also steered me towards social justice. I am no longer friends with any of those people in real life or online. Once I became a feminist and was able to identify their sexism, I wasn’t their darling atheist spokeswoman anymore. It was another valuable lesson in the way people form their groups and their echo-chambers within. How people will ignore some really bad things just to stay included and how they will turn when someone strays. Some people may be thinking of trump supporters now, but everyone is susceptible to this type of behavior.

Fast forward a few years later, but still a few years ago and I had to deal with a callout on an anonymous forum I moderated bc they monitored my tumblr and I made the sin of reblog from and being in mutuals with the wrong people, (who were just ppl they didn’t like including people I’ve since met IRL.) I was dubbed a transphobe not for anything I explicitly said or did that was transphobic, it was guilt by association. Had to leave the forum, as this was also invitation to make up other horrible things I never did bc they could and now ppl were ready to believe.

This is around the time TERF started catching on, and while I certainly agree with calling out transphobia in feminism (I would never insist a trans woman is male, I think thats a violent act against trans women! And I despise it being done in the name of feminism) but at the same time it turned into a witch hunt for anyone who talked about sex-based oppression that even ended up attacking other trans woman for not towing a certain Tumblr rhetoric on these issues!

I’m no LGBT elder by any means, but I have been online since I was about 12 and I’m 32 now. I remember a time when the internet was far more horrible on SJ matters but also far more anonymous. People never dropped their real name; now one of the biggest social media sites requires it. And before that even happened I still saw a lot of petty bullshit happening online that wound up really hurting people IRL. So now with it easier to find out who people are and where they live, I can only imagine how online drama has ruined lives. We know it has driven people to suicide, and so as fun as it is to get self righteously angry at people for whatever your cause is, there’s still a person at the other end and no one’s perfect.

I am truly disturbed at how incredibly cliquey SJ groups are online, how callout posts aren’t for extreme racist sexist bigots, but for some drama I can’t even parse in their so called “proof”. And then you have activists on this site who block anyone who disagrees with them so their criticisms can’t show up in the notes. Some even go so far as dox people now for daring to disagree! K(And let’s be clear, I shed no tears for literal nazis being doxxed and losing their job, that’s just not what I’m seeing)

It’s easy, its human nature to fall into social pressures and conform to whatever the Big Names in your group are saying without question and to defend an absurd position based on emotional attachment than logical assessment. And we know it’s also easy to fall into a mob mentality and scapegoat people for all our problems. It’s also super fucking easy to plead mental illness and pretend you should be allowed to say anything you want without criticism, something that I hate so much as one who suffers from many mental issues including anxiety. (That’s why I created rules for myself when arguing online so I didn’t end up giving myself panic attacks over an internet edge lord)

I say this knowing I have participated in this behavior myself as well as having been a victim of it. But a lot in my life has changed and I am an older and sicker… and still likely to make similar mistakes. Point is I have learned and I have trained myself to not to fall into these traps and it does help. Experience is one hell of a teacher but it doesn’t have to be the only one.

No one can know if they are 100% right on any given issue, we all have our convictions for a reason. The difference is are you willing to listen to dissent? Are you willing to challenge your opinion and put it to the test? Or do you make block lists and shun anyone who entertains any different opinion? (a classic tactic amongst anti-vax groups when a parent sees the science) My convinction of many of my beliefs comes from the fact I have argued them over and over again, discharging beliefs that did not pass the test, while strengthening my arguments for and belief in those that do.

Make no mistake, when it does come to the so called “discourse” both sides can be guilty of this shit. I claim no purity.
And I am in no way implying that we tolerate hate groups and violent hate speech, like those of nazis bc unfortunately nazis are actually relevant again, but I am saying some of you need a reality check on what that exactly entails, because a lesbian speaking her truth is not it.

And for god sakes don’t put teens on block lists, you know it invites harassment, you fucking know it.

If you’re Muslim that’s okay

If you’re black that’s okay

If you’re white that’s okay

If you’re Christian that’s okay

If you’re atheist that’s okay

If you’re LGBTQA that’s okay

If you’re a feminist that’s okay

If you are racist, misogynistic, misandrist, homophobic/biphobic/transphobic, or discriminating someone because of religion, and basically being a shitty piece of human trash in general, that is not okay.