Last week, I mentioned the “largest ever gathering of black atheists.”
[Host Tony Cox:] So, Norm, why is this such an issue for black people who believe in either humanism or atheism?
Allen: … there have been many negative aspects to religion. For example, even though religion was used during the abolitionist movement to help free African-American slaves, the fact of the matter is that Christianity was used to enslave African-Americans in the first place. So, you have on the one hand a liberative type of force coming from Christianity. But on the other hand you have an enslaving force.
And so you have this dichotomy. You have this paradox that is religion. And what we believe that as non-religious people, we have to look at this objectively and talk about the positive aspects as well as the negative aspects. And it’s hard for us to move forward unless we do so.
Cox: A final thing for you, Jamila. You said that you grew up in a household where there were conflicting religious points of views, from your parents. What are you going to tell your child?
Bey: What I do tell him is science is good. Question everything. He’s only two now, but when he’s older, I’m sure this will bite me in the behind. Question everything. There is nothing that you can’t inquire about. And if people tell you to have faith, grab your wallet and, you know, come and talk to mommy about it and we’ll find some more information for you. But don’t accept anything at all that they tell you not to question.
If they tell you, oh well, the pastor says this or somebody tells me this or it’ll be revealed to you. That’s code word for we don’t have a real answer, just go along with it. And we don’t do that in this house, little boy.
(Thanks to Joe for the link!)