Having criticized an American Atheists action again, let me take a moment and highlight something awesome from them. I have been meaning to blog about this for a while but was waiting for a chance to study up on the details of what wound up going down with the relevant Supreme Court case under discussion here first. As regular readers of the blog may notice, my posts this last month or so have featured a lot of articles on stories from weeks or months prior that I have only been catching up on.
Anyway, let me stop delaying getting to this. Amanda Knief of American Atheists went on CNN November 3 and did a brilliant job. She made perfect arguments. She was professional, poised, and politely assertive. She was incredibly efficiently, on point, articulate, and thorough within a tiny space of available time. As a professional public speaker I know what skill is required to be that substantive that succinctly. And I can only imagine how hard it is with a national television camera trained on you. Amanda was seriously ready for prime time. She represented both the 1st Amendment and atheists fantastically.
In the spring, I also highlighted a debate she had with an accomplished Christian minister about whether religion was the enemy of feminism. The event was for a feminist organization, rather than an atheist one, and as I noted at the time it was a good example of the kind of crossover work that is good for the movement. She also has written, Citizen Lobbyist, a very well-received manual for ordinary citizens to know how to lobby their representatives most effectively, that also should have influence beyond the atheist community.
As a bonus, while we are on the topic of how to do being, here is one of the best jobs a humanist/secularist/atheist has ever done parrying against a hostile cable news anchor. Fred Edwords not letting Bill O’Reilly get away with anything: