425 N. Frances St., Madison, WI
Ceremonial deism, also called civil religion, shows up in lots of places in American society: "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance, "in god we trust" on our currency, vaguely religious invocations to kick off public meetings, the almost obligatory "God bless America" at the end of political speeches, the National Day of Prayer, and so on.
These seem like blatant violations of the 1st Amendment, and you'd expect that atheists would be opposed to each and every instance of it. But are they secretly a blessing? Do they convey the idea that only a watered-down form of generic religion is worth paying even lip service to? Do they trivialize religion to the point where it can fairly be compared to "have a nice day" in terms of ritual insincerity?
Or should we atheists be working our buns off to get "in god we trust" off our currency?
The Atheist Lounge will tackle this question on, as usual, the last Thursday of the month. Order food and drink at 7 PM, with short presentation starting about 30-45 minutes thereafter, and plenty of open discussion after that.