Secular Americans Have a Voice at the Republican National Convention

Once the Republican National Convention gets underway, there will be some representation from the non-theistic side (really!) eager to see if we can actually make inroads into the GOP.

Edwina Rogers

Robyn Blumner of the St. Petersburg Times has the brief interview with the Secular Coalition for America’s Executive Director Edwina Rogers:

Who is the oddest bedfellow at the Republican National Convention, which officially launches Monday? No, it’s not Log Cabin Republicans, that group of gay Republicans who assiduously ignore the “Unwelcome” mat the party has put out for them. It would have to be Edwina Rogers, the new head of the Secular Coalition for America, a nonprofit group of atheists, agnostics and humanists.

The RNC is packed with her people, except that they probably all think she’s going to hell. Several times within the last year, her evangelical family and friends ambushed her with full staged interventions trying to save her soul.

[Edwina Rogers:] If we are going to affect legislation on Capitol Hill, we need to work with both sides. The fact is, there are millions of Republicans that feel the way I do about these issues, and if those millions of Republican voters have a voice, the politicians will listen.

What I am trying to do is increase the influence of secular Americans. At the convention, I will attend every event that I possibly can and speak to anyone who is open to hearing more about our mission.

So much has been made of the fact that Rogers is a registered Republican and has worked for a few prominent ones — to the point where many bloggers wouldn’t give her the time of day, saying they distrusted her loyalties right from the start.

I’ve said before that I think she’s doing a great job in her new position, but this is really the biggest test so far: Can she get Republicans to listen to her when she dons her SCA hat? If she can find a way to get some of the moderates in the GOP to take Secular Americans seriously, that would go a long way in preventing the Christian Right from getting even more power.

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.