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Reply #235: Pressure is particularly harsh on families. [View All]

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Pacifist Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-30-10 04:18 PM
Response to Reply #224
235. Pressure is particularly harsh on families.
My children had several friends in the neighborhood with parents who were delighted to have their children come to play at my house when they learned I was a member of the clergy. What could be a safer environment than that, right? As soon as they found out I served a Unitarian Universalist congregation and self-identified as a religious humanist their children were not only no longer allowed to play in my home, my children were not allowed to play at theirs.

A member of the local humanist group was let go from a small family business when they found out he was atheist.

A senior girl was quite loudly verbally mocked by classmates and their families as she accepted her diploma at graduation because she and her atheist parents had requested the 25 foot cross at the podium in the megachurch where the graduation of a public high school was being held be suitably covered during the ceremony. Their yard was vandalized repeatedly in the weeks leading up to the graduation.

The DEC in the county directly to the south of mine declined to support a candidate for public office when they found out he was an atheist. Yes, that is D as in Democrat.

The local churches organized a boycott of a local fresh produce market when they learned it was owned and operated by a family of atheists. Considering the percentage of Christians and atheists in our community, exactly how long do you think they stayed in business?

I am obviously open about my non-theism. I have had people spit on me (quite literally), feel perfectly within their rights to inform me I will burn in hell, and call me an unfit mother.

My own extended family chose to ignore my graduation from seminary because it was not a Southern Baptist seminary. They did not acknowledge my ordination into the clergy other than one aunt who sent me a card with a single Bible passage on it that indicated I was destined for the pits of hell. My aunts, uncles and cousins refuse to use my title on formal correspondence like wedding invitations or baby announcements because I am not a "real" Reverend. This is family, so you can imagine what I get from strangers.
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