New Guest Post at Skepchick

I’m all over the place this week, I know. In addition to the new column on AlterNet, I have a guest post up at Skepchick, contributing to Surly Amy’s “Speaking Out Against Hate Directed at Women” series. Here’s an excerpt:

There’s one thing that just about every atheist activist agrees on, which is that religion has always treated women as inferior. Whether it’s demonizing them as evil temptresses who brought sin into the world, demanding their silence and subordination, or treating them as male property with no desires of their own, every major church has a litany of shockingly sexist teachings. And yet, even though men are the faces and the voices of organized religion, even though they wield the power and set the doctrines, they still depend on women. In order to perpetuate themselves, the churches need women’s attendance, women’s unpaid labor, and especially women’s willingness to have children and to raise them in the faith.

This is a vulnerability that’s crying out for atheists to exploit. If we could offer religious women a better alternative – if we could invite them into a secular community where they’d be treated as equals, where there’d be no more of the hateful prejudice and the blatant double standards they’ve so often been subjected to – then they’d have every reason to flock to our banner, draining the churches’ vitality in the bargain. This could be such a devastating blow, it seems to me, we should be bending all our efforts toward it. We should be doing everything possible to reach out to women; we should be throwing the doors wide open to welcome them in.

I’m proud to contribute to this series, and honored that I had an opportunity to do so. Go read the whole thing!

Why People Are Flocking to a New Wave of Secular Communities: Atheist Churches
New on the Guardian: The Peaceful Side of Atheism
The Rebirth of Nullification in Alabama
Weekend Coffee: February 22
About Adam Lee

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

  • Minneapostate

    Great post, Adam! Ever since the whole misogyny thing became an issue within the atheist community, it’s bugged the crap out of me. I’m a very infrequent commenter to any of the blogs I read, but hardly a day goes by that I don’t lament the glaring failure to roll out the red carpet to women. Instead, many important voices are driven away, and the opportunity to accelerate the growth of atheism and improve diversity is lost. It saddens and angers me because it seems so obvious. Keep up the great work!

  • Adam Lee

    Thank you! I agree, this is such an obvious opportunity, so it makes me even more upset that we’re not doing more to take advantage of it. I hope posts like mine can contribute, even in a small way, to shifting the debate.