Spencer wasn’t exactly defending Christianity; he said that he, like Hitchens, was an atheist. But he longed for something as robust and binding as Christianity had once been in the West, before churches surrendered their power to folk-singing liberals and televangelists.
American Atheists fights to eliminate bigotry against our community. And we cannot support bigotry from our community. I certainly cannot.
So to be clear, and I can’t believe I need to say this from the stage, if you are a person who believes white supremacy is “reasonable,” if you believe bigotry against other people because of their race or gender or sexual orientation is morally acceptable, if you think good people can march alongside Nazis, our tent is too small for you.
I sometimes see otherwise well meaning but often misinformed people (mostly people that the Alt Right does not target) uncritically repeating their mantras that the people they are targeting can’t handle “ideas” or “disagreement”.
Ridicule was hard to counter. So Anglin mocked. He made people laugh. “The whole point is to make something outrageous,” he said on the site. “It’s about creating a giant spectacle, a media spectacle that desensitizes people to these ideas.” He considered jokes about Josef Mengele training dogs to rape Jewish women “comedy gold.
It’s a joke until someone gets hurt as people take the hatred offline. Many reasonable people did not take the threat of the Alt-Right King Donald Trump seriously enough because he seemed like a joke candidate. The strangest part of the internet anti-PC movement is that it unites crank atheists and Christians in their support of Donald Trump.
Ideas matter as we all know when fundamentalists legislate what everyone can and can not do.
In the latest and most significant anti-LGBT action yet from the Trump administration, the Justice Department last night filed a brief with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit arguing that federal civil rights laws do not protect individuals from discrimination based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.
Believe it or not there are self identified, prominent atheists that will also argue in favor of the right for Christians to discriminate against LGBT. They either don’t recognize the slippery slope they are on or foolishly think it won’t escalate.
Despite efforts to minimize it, Alt-Right rhetoric is not simply hateful or mean words that sensitive people can’t handle. Beliefs inform actions and atheists most of all should already know this.