Do You Believe in Secular America?

I don’t know who Jared Scheib is, but if the simple-yet-powerful video below is any indication, can we get him to design all of our billboards, too?

That’s one of the seven videos selected by the Richard Dawkins Foundation as a finalist in their “Ten Point Vision of a Secular America” contest. Winner gets two plane tickets to the Reason Rally and an opportunity to meet Dawkins himself. You can vote for your favorite here!

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • http://thestir.squarespace.com/ Servaas

    Classic. Funny but classic. Not sure if this will go the way the ‘Sh*t people say’ videos went but it could very likely.

  • Gunstargreen

    This needs to be on national TV. Now.

  • http://www.facebook.com/AnonymousBoy Larry Meredith

     And if the conservatives have their way, as they usually get, those beliefs are to be considered a religion merely because they are beliefs. And therefore, we are trying to push our “secular religion” onto others.

  • Christi99100

    Is that Bob Newhart? And yes, this needs to be on TV now. Like today. During a certain football game.

  • Maevwen

    I thought this was done very well.  Inclusive, logical, ethical.  Loved it.  Shared. 

  • Annie

    Thanks for the voting link!  I liked the diversity of videos presented… we have some very talented people in our community. 

  • Nordog

    I do not support a secular America, but then I don’t define America as its government.  I believe in a pluralistic America with equal rights for all and with a secular government.

    I belive it is far too often necessary to remind people that a country is more than its government.

  • http://www.asecularcitizen.com/ ASecularCitizen

    That is by far my favorite of the finalist videos, and the one that got my vote.  I like it because of its positive messaging and focus on secularism — too many (all?) of the other contestant videos can’t seem to help but define themselves in negative terms of what they don’t believe,  and divert into attacking religion, while Reason Rally is supposedly branded as “a celebration of secular values”.  So, kudos on the message discipline — to say nothing of the great production values.

    Nontheist citizens have a real image problem.  I don’t deny that a robust defense is necessary, or that attacks against nontheists are frequent and often unfair.  What I do say is that in order to overcome the prejudices that disadvantage us, we’ve got to start defining ourselves more in terms of affirmations than negations, and demonstrating by example the fact that we are not dissimilar http://bit.ly/whJrQx to a majority of other citizens in terms of our support for secular values like pluralism, tolerance, and freedom from government coersion in matters of private belief.

  • http://www.everydayintheparkwithgeorge.com/ Matt E

    Great video, I voted for it. I watched the other six videos as well – it was very depressing. Out of seven finalists there were only two good videos, the rest being deeply flawed if not downright bad. Can’t we do better?

    • Annie

      I don’t know.  I was under the impression these were amateurs making the videos.  I voted for the one showcased here, but I also liked the one about the Founding Fathers (though I had trouble reading the quotes). 

  • Kat

    I think some of these videos stretched too far by almost attacking religious Americans and didn’t use the phrase “secular GOVERNMENT” enough. A “secular society” is not a battle we’re going to win in our lifetime or even our childrens’ lifetimes, but maybe our grandchildren can live in one in this country if they grow up with a secular government first. That’s my dream, but not my fight. I’m an agnostic atheist and I support religious freedom for consenting adults. I think belief minorities, like other minorities, are acutely aware of the liberties and privileges the majority has the power to give and take away. If we want freedom from religion, we need to acknowledge the people who want freedom to be religious. A secular government that guarantees freedom from religion as well as religious freedom is necessary if we want to ensure the inclusion of all Americans, faithful and non, in our pluralistic society. Otherwise, we’re just going to perpetuate the us-versus-them culture by attacking people who could be our allies.

    Anyway, I voted for the Constitution one because American historical memory is my gig.

  • http://twitter.com/m_ethaniel Mistletoe Ethaniel

    Couldn’t help thinking at about 1:15: “And I’m a hipster-American”.

    Kidding aside, a good video.

  • Anonymous

    Given the flogging that’s given by atheists to the agnostic position in a recent thread, I’m surprised no one mentioned that.

    Anyway, I do agree that the focus should be a secular government.


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