Atheist Action Items

If we’re going to create a world more friendly to reason, we need to raise our voices and speak out for the atheist viewpoint. This week, there are several ways in which you can help:

• Two Texas state legislators have been courageously fighting back against creationism by proposing legislation to increase oversight and disclosure of the creationist-dominated State Board of Education. Take a moment to sign this petition and thank them.

• The city of Ottawa has rejected the pro-atheist bus ads that have been catching London by storm. City Councillor Alex Cullen is moving to repeal this decision at the council’s March 11 meeting, and he’s asking for people to help out by contacting the rest of Ottawa’s city councillors and pressuring them to do the right thing. Tell Ottawa to stand up for atheists’ free speech!

Here is a link to the Councillors’ contact information:
http://www.ottawa.ca/city_hall/mayor_council/councillors/index_en.html

To make things really easy, reader Marlowe Fillipov has pulled together all their e-mail addresses:
Georges.Bedard@ottawa.ca, Michel.Bellemare@ottawa.ca, Rainer.Bloess@ottawa.ca, Glenn.Brooks@ottawa.ca, rick.chiarelli@ottawa.ca, Diane.Deans@ottawa.ca, Steve.Desroches@ottawa.ca, Clive.Doucet@ottawa.ca, Eli.El-Chantiry@ottawa.ca, Peggy.Feltmate@ottawa.ca, Jan.Harder@ottawa.ca, Diane.Holmes@ottawa.ca, Peter.Hume@ottawa.ca, Gord.Hunter@ottawa.ca, Rob.Jellett@ottawa.ca, Kitchissippi@ottawa.ca, Jacques.Legendre@ottawa.ca, Maria.Mcrae@ottawa.ca, Bob.Monette@ottawa.ca, Shad.Qadri@ottawa.ca, Doug.Thompson@ottawa.ca, Marianne.Wilkinson@ottawa.ca, Alex.Cullen@ottawa.ca

Please send them an e-mail today.

• Finally, atheists should stand together against religiously motivated, ineffective and dangerous “abstinence-only” sex ed classes in public schools, most of which are just thinly disguised vehicles for Christian proselytizing. The No More Money campaign has been founded to oppose these programs (HT: Marty Klein). Please take action at their site and send a message to President Obama telling him that Americans deserve secular, reality-based sex ed in their public schools.

About Adam Lee

Adam Lee is an atheist writer and speaker living in New York City. His new novel, Broken Ring, is available in paperback and e-book. Read his full bio, or follow him on Twitter.

  • http://cranialhyperossification.blogspot.com GDad

    About a year ago, our governor spoke out against abstinence-only sex education. I wrote him a letter to thank him for his evidence-based approach to reality. Disappointingly, the functionary that answered my letter very much backpedaled and said that the guv had really meant something like, “Abstinence is great, but those pesky facts get in the way, and in order to keep the damned liberals happy, I said what I said.”

    I think the functionary wasn’t really expressing the guv’s true opinion, based on other observations I’ve made. It just crisps my noodles to think that our state government is so afraid of the fundies that they can’t even accept praise for doing what’s right.

  • LindaJoy

    Ebon- thank you for posting this. I think it’s great to inform your readers about threats to the separation of religion and government whenever possible. We have two bills in the state legislature of Kentucky right now that are being pushed by religionists. One would require all women who are choosing an abortion to have an ultrasound and the doctor is required to show it to them in person before they can have the procedure. (It’s KY Senate bill 79 which passed and was sent to the KY House). Also, KY Senate bill #68 that would only allow married hetersexual couples to adopt children in KY. This place drives me crazy!

  • Opethian_days

    Thank you so much for posting this! i immediately sent off an e-mail to all of the city council, and received this reply from one of the members.

    “The key parts of this policy
    include principles in the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards which
    includes as unacceptable “demean, denigrate or disparage any
    identifiable person, group of persons, firm, organization, industrial
    or commercial activity, profession, product or service or attempt to
    bring it or them into public contempt or ridicule”. It also condones
    any form of discrimination based on religion.

    Even more direct is article 5 of the OC Transpo Ad Guidelines which
    states that religious advertising is not permitted “which promotes a
    specific ideology, ethic, point of view, policy or action, which in the
    opinion of the City might be deemed prejudicial to other religious
    groups or offensive to users of the transit system”. It then goes on
    to state that “Religious advertising will be permitted if the
    information is designed to promote a specific meeting, gathering ore
    event and the location, date and time of said event.”

    I replied asking what was so “offensive” and “prejudice” about “there is probably no god, so stop worrying and enjoy your life”.

    i await a reply

  • Archimdedz

    Update: Atheist Bus ad goes ahead in Ottawa

    Atheist transit ads get green light in Ottawa
    By Patrick Dare, Ottawa Citizen
    March 11, 2009 5:24 PM
    Atheist transit ads get green light in Ottawa

  • Archimdedz
  • Archimedez

    P.S. Here’s a link to a video with some more background on the international bus ad campaign, with the person who came up with the idea, Ariane Sherine.

    Ariane Sherine
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kfwwb_3Nu8M

  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/daylightatheism Ebonmuse

    Score one for the good guys. :) Thanks to everyone who took part!


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