The downside: They kept referring to it as a camp for atheists. Which it most certainly is not.
This headline doesn’t help:
Dawkins sets up kids’ camp to groom atheists
Neither do excerpts from the articles:
The author of The God Delusion is helping to launch Britain’s first summer retreat for non-believers, where children will have lessons in evolution and sing along to John Lennon’s Imagine.
The Jagos, from Basingstoke, Hampshire, are among 24 children who will be taking part in Britain’s first summer camp for atheists.
Budding atheists will be given lessons to arm themselves in the ways of rational scepticism.
This is just irresponsible journalism on the part of Lois Rogers, who wrote all the pieces.
Camp Quest is not *for* atheists. It’s for children of atheist parents. There’s a major difference.
Camp counselors don’t know if these kids are atheists or not — the kids don’t have to sign some “statement of disbelief.” They have no plans to indoctrinate them; rather, they just want to teach them how to think critically and ask the right types of questions. Hell, many of the kids are too young to know what they believe.
As Trina Hoaks puts it:
Richard isn’t trying to create atheists — his goal, as he makes abundantly clear all the time, is to raise consciousness and give children the tools to be critical thinkers.
In fact, anyone who has read his book knows that Dawkins gets upset when he hears children being referred to as “Christian child” or “Muslim child.” I would expect him to feel just as upset to hear a reference to an “atheist child.”
(via Atheism Examiner)