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Re: [skeptics-137] My Contrarian thoughts to thoughts from Don.....Donation link on newsletter below.

From: Marlys Kummer D.
Sent on: Friday, March 22, 2013 12:54 PM
You are right, Iggy.  Most people have come to the conclusion on their own.  I 


Sent from iPhone

On Mar 22, 2013, at 12:07 PM, Kansas City Skeptic <[address removed]> wrote:


I wrote "All Kansas City atheists KCAC activists (or most) appear to have no constraints of families.... "Which goes in line with your "some" who "do have families".... I should have been clearer and omitted "all".  I was pointing out "general trends" statistically so to speak.

Not a big deal.  This doesn't effect the main gist of my post - it appears there is no data on how changes in societal structure take place based on "atheistic conversions" or activism. Susan Jacoby is writing a book now on "atheistic conversions" - see  for her interview. She points out that "only thinking about the world in general" is known to slowly change people's opinions. Not debates which she refuses to participate. Richard Dawkins also doesn't debate with bat shit crazy religious people, only with liberal Christians.

What I am saying is that there maybe more effective and faster ways of converting people to rational thinking than converting people to atheism through activism, and even more effective ways of making them accept atheists as equals than activism by atheists. What are these ways? Don't know.

It seems to me the society in general is doing a good job at it. Susan Jacoby in the same interview states this is not an issue in European countries, only in America and it appears it has not been the case in Europe for a long time since Darwin and even enlightenment. It looks like the "Protestant" nature of the US is making this country such a black sheep. 

I am surprised that leading freethinkers have not gotten together with neurobiologists, psychologists and scholars of religion, including scholars of terrorism :o) to figure it out yet. With the millions that Dawkins, Harris, Dennet, Hitchens and other freethinkers who publish prolifically they'd know. Of course, they can do this research as part of scientific community and get grants for it  :o)

This would be the true "salvation"  - Darrel Ray was able to conduct his sex survey online for his book. Maybe the same can be done for "how to most effectively turn the religious tide around"?

Richard Dawkins has "Concert's Corner" on his site where there are hundreds of testimonials. Having read quite a few over past years I don't recall many if any that point to "atheist activism" but mostly to "thinking things over, reading books and coming across articles on science and discourse of religion and rationality".

Just being a downer......

On Fri, Mar 22, 2013 at 11:38 AM, Marlys Kummer Doerflinger <[address removed]> wrote:

I wanted to comment on one of Iggy’s comments……First One Correction……some of the younger Atheists of KCAC do have families.  This is why they are having the first Camp Quest in Kansas City next year. 


In addition to that there are many ways which we are activists. Some feel that they can come out to the community without suffering any adverse consequences.  If you are one of those who cannot put on your Facebook page that you are a non-believer, humanist, or atheist, or you may be able to support the movement by contributing to the projects. 


At the very end of this e-mail is the KCAC’s newsletter it has a link at which you can contribute to both the AIDS Walk and/or Camp Quest.  Josh did not want to spam everyone since some are members of several groups.  But several of us are just members of the Skeptics.






Forgot to include this...................


Maybe instead of "Atheism Activism" more of a Sam Harris' position on "promoting rationalism" and "brightness" should be the default position.


Using Socratic Method of Q&A is the shit that maybe the salvation.


OK, now I am done... and ready to go into the bomb shelter!






On Fri, Mar 22, 2013 at 9:56 AM, Kansas City Skeptic <[address removed]> wrote:

---------- Forwarded message ----------

From: Penny <[address removed]>
I love your spirit, Don, and I admire our young atheists who had the courage to stand on a street corner to interact with parade-goers. 



I'd like to present a somewhat contrarian string of thoughts to Don's...


My basic summation is that society at large is making huge strides in moderating bat shit crazy religion on its own.  Steven Pinker's most recent book shows overwhelming evidence for equal human rights, lower violence, etc though he himself really doesn't mention religion explicitly - I I asked him this question when he spoke at Linda Hall Library last year. Technology, medicine, life extension, interacting with gays, single mothers, every day atheists and new shiny gadgets we play with drive a normal "religious not bat shit crazy" person to be even more moderate.


I'd like to see some sociological studies where "atheism activism" actually plays some meaningful role in changing people's attitudes to any social, educational issues? So far all I have seen (acceptance of gays is the most glaring one recently) is that atheism activism has never been mentioned by people who accepted gays. The same goes for gun control legislation (91% for background checks). I am positive the same was in the 60's with interracial marriage - ATHEISM ACTIVISM NEVER was in any meaningful way a decisive factor.


Don't know, maybe atheism is acting like an invisible Holy Spirit?


It appears to me that "faith position" (if you want to call it this way) is serving more of a role of underwear we use for one day and then toss it into the laundry basket to get another one and don't even think about it. The fact that "faith position" plays a minor role seemed to be supported by the polls when the economic collapse happened a few years ago. I noticed that "social issues" (abortions, gays, god in schools, public prayer) disappeared completely from the top 10 and even 20 issues of concerns for Americans. In short, "position on faith" appears to not determine American sense of what they need from life in difficult situations, but rather a backup position of moderation when you guys know you are fucked. 


In addition, the reality is that everyday grind makes "atheism" activism for an average atheist not sustainable. All Kansas City atheists KCAC activists (or most) appear to have no constraints of families, paying for their kids college, they are younger and are a different breed. Not sure if they will individaully will continue activism as they get married (will they?), have kids (will they?), will get older (will they?", get sicker (will they?) and retire (will they?)


Over the few past years I have evolved from becoming a militant anti-theist in your face to "I don't really give a shit" apatheist. It's fun to spar with bat shit crazies but you know they'll die out and there is nothing they can do about it. You know that even moderates like Fred and John who are hanging out with atheists more than they with their own church people will die out in 1 generation and if stats are correct 75-80% of younger people now (19-42 years old) support gay marriage, equality, and support for evolution is over 50% now - moderation will take place on its own.


Atheist activism is not needed as I see it was not needed in European countries, in Northern Europe Canada, in Australia. Religious people will be shamed and are being shamed into intellectual submission to rationality on their own through societal pressures. To the best of my knowledge and what I have read this has happened in other countries and is happening to America.


While I understand the excitement of moving along all the time, confronting bat shit crazy religious stereotypes, etc, I may say a blasphemous thing - dealing with the bat shit crazy religious people in every day life is not fun for me anymore.


Shall I say that there is no data to point that atheism activism is not pointless?


Ducking for cover and sitting back enjoying the fall out :o)




From: Marlys or Gene Doerflinger [mailto:[address removed]]
Sent: Thursday, March 21,[masked]:57 PM
To: [address removed]
Subject: FW: 25th Annual KC AIDS Walk Here is the paypal link which Josh mentioned for those of you would would like to donate.


Here is the link that Josh mentioned on the newsletter. 


From: Sarah [mailto:contact=[address removed]] On Behalf Of Sarah
Sent: Thursday, March 21,[masked]:33 PM
To: Gene and Marlys
Subject: 25th Annual KC AIDS Walk


March Newsletter

25th Annual KC AIDS Walk, April Open Meeting




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8 a.m. to noon Saturday, April 27

Frank A. Theis Park, 533 Emanuel Cleaver II Blvd., Kansas City, MO 64110 


Join the Kansas City Atheist Coalition and Camp Quest Kansas City for the 25th annual AIDS WALK Kansas City. Presented by the AIDS Service Foundation of Greater Kansas City, AIDS WALK 2013 is a three-mile walk beginning and ending in Theis Park at 47th Street and Oak Street, east of the Country Club Plaza.

This is a great opportunity for KCAC and Camp Quest KC to gain exposure in the community while supporting a very worthy cause. Please join us for the walk in your sky-blue KCAC T-shirt, and please use THIS LINK to donate to AIDS Walk as a KCAC member and Camp Quest KC supporter.

All proceeds go to raise awareness and funding for local AIDS service organizations that provide shelter, emergency services, medical care and long-term nursing care to the women, men and children living with HIV/AIDS in our community. Beneficiaries include SAVE Inc., Good Samaritan Project, Kansas City Free Health Clinic and Hope Care Center.

We have set our fundraising goal at $1,500. This goal could be met and exceeded if everyone on the mailing list gave just $10. Please join us for the walk and donate what you are able!


6 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, April 3

Kauffman Foundation Conference Center, 4801 Rockhill Road, Kansas City, MO 64110 


The Kansas City Atheist Coalition would like to invite dues-paying members to an open board meeting.

KCAC holds monthly board meetings to plan and organize events. To provide greater transparency, increase the opportunity for member feedback on past events and solicit ideas for future events, we have decided to begin holding open board meetings every other month for dues-paying members.

We understand that 6 p.m. is when most people eat dinner. The Kauffman Foundation Conference Center does not allow outside food or beverages. All food and beverages must be ordered through the KFCC’s in-house caterer. If you would like to eat during the meeting (as the board members will be), please select one of the three listed sandwich options, post your order in a comment on the Facebook event page and send a PayPal payment of $15.00 to [address removed] by Sunday, March 24.

Sandwiches are served with chips, iced tea and cookies. Please notify us of any dietary restrictions or food allergies.

Marinated Tomato and Fresh Mozzarella $15.00 (includes gratuity)

Fresh whole-milk mozzarella and tomatoes with lettuce, red onion and balsamic aioli on a fresh ciabatta roll

Turkey Sandwich $15.00 (includes gratuity)

Turkey sandwich on white or wheat with lettuce, tomato and cheese

Ham Sandwich $15.00 (includes gratuity)

Ham sandwich on white or wheat with lettuce, tomato, and cheese

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