Ask Richard: Young Atheist’s Parents Face Bigotry and Harrassment in Small Religious Town

Note: Letter writers’ names are changed to protect their privacy.
Dear Richard,

My name is Kaitlyn. I’m 15 years old and have been an atheist since I was 10. I’m fortunate enough to have parents that are very open minded and irreligious.

I happen to live in a small, extremely religious town. (There are 19 Christian churches here, and we just reached a population of 2,000 last spring) I’ve become somewhat notorious for my atheism because I’m really open about it. Most people have gotten used to me, I guess. I’m not targeted much anymore.

However, this is not so for my family. [Click headline for more...] [Read more...]

Joe Klein Deserves a Meme

Klein meme lady across street

The post that Hemant published yesterday about Joe Klein’s absurd, unfair, and false dumping on Secular Humanists in the latest TIME Magazine got me madder and madder the more I thought about it. People have sometimes said that I can be eloquent, but many commenters had already written very eloquent letters of protest to the TIME editors, and I was so pissed off that eloquence wasn’t within my reach. By the time I got around to commenting, the post had mostly run its course with over 240 comments, so I decided to expand my comment into a post of its own so that more people can see the idea.

There was some discussion at the first of the comments about whether or not Klein had himself lent a hand in the Oklahoma tornado disaster zone, but as I said, that doesn’t matter. Regardless of whether he was out anywhere helping, and regardless of why he was, his out-of-the-blue disparagement of Secular Humanists was completely unnecessary for the point of his article, and even unnecessary for that part of his article, and it was factually false. It was just a stupid, bigoted dig when he saw he’d given himself an opportunity.

[Click headline for more...] [Read more...]

Ask Richard: Atheist Daughter Misreads her Father’s Concern

Yesterday was Fathers Day, and I hope that all fathers, daughters, and sons were able to express their love and appreciation for each other. The feelings that fathers have for their children can be very complex and difficult for them to understand and to express clearly.

This letter illustrates this, and shows how important and worthwhile it is for us to work together with our fathers to keep fear, anger, and confusion from blocking the love that should and can flow freely between us.

Note: Letter writers’ names are changed to protect their privacy.

Dear Richard,

Recently, I “came out” to my father as a non-believer. Although I see myself more as an apatheist, since I just don’t care about religion in the first place, I also consider myself an atheist, as I also don’t believe in any religion to be true either. When I did tell my father, I told him I was an “atheist,” since it seemed like the simplest explanation. As a non-denominational, non-churchgoing Christian, I thought my father would take it well, and we’d maybe talk about our differences.

[Click headline for more...] [Read more...]

Ask Richard: Caught Between Jewish Parents and a Christian Boyfriend: Painful Choices Ahead

Note: Letter writers’ names are changed to protect their privacy. Hello, I have read some of your advice letters and they have been really helpful, however I still need help! I am seeking advice about my relationship. I am 18 years old and turning 19 in August, I will be going to college in August [Read More...]

Ask Richard: My Six-Year-Old Son is an Outspoken Atheist

Note: Letter writers’ names are changed to protect their privacy. Dear Richard, I’m not usually the sort to ask for advice this way, but I’ve come up against a situation where I could use some input. My son is six years old and in his class at school, as is typical, almost all the kids [Read More...]


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