Barrett Brown, the director of communications for the godless lobby “Enlighten The Vote” and a contributor to skeptic magazines, explains why he deserves all the mean e-mails he gets:
In my defense, though, I didn’t choose to be either an atheist or a skeptic; rather, these were simply mindsets I came to adopt around the age of 13 or so simply because I determined them to be the most accurate frameworks by which to view the universe. I much preferred my happily mystical childhood to my killjoy adulthood; having been raised by a New Age single mother who suggested that I was an Indigo Child with an alien soul, required that I meditate with her daily, prompted me to learn the more potentially significant quatrains of Nostradamus, and had me keep a dream journal next to my bed in order to better divine the future by way of my eternal connection to the collective unconscious, my pre-adolescence was far more interesting than my post-puberty sentience, devoid as it is of ghosts and prophecy and reincarnation and other such things in which I would very much like to believe simply out of appreciation for novelty. Also, I find atheism embarrassing, it being a stereotypical product of teenage angst, Nietsche-derived pseudo-intellectualism,
and the mediocre thinker’s fetish for shock value. Being an atheist is like not owning a TV – completely rational, but best kept to one’s self.
So I feel no animosity for my various magic-oriented opponents, whether their respective manifestations of mysticism involve intelligent design, demonology, faith healing, Islam, majoring in English in expectation of becoming an English professor, homeopathic medicine, or whatever. Such irrational beliefs as this make the world a more enchanting place, one in which the failures of human reason are on perpetual display for those of us who lack the means to travel all the way over to South Africa in order to ask a Zulu whether raping a virgin is more or less likely to cure AIDs if the victim has had her clitoris ritually mutilated during infancy by way of a custom justified by religious patriarchy. Anyway, a little superstition never hurt anyone.