License Plate Holder:
I Am Atheist
I Am America
Peter Hopp

 

I AM ATHEIST
I AM AMERICA

  

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From: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
To: "PublicPH"
Subject: Re: WebMaster:_Positive_Atheism_Index
Date: January 26, 2002 3:25 AM

This is excellent! As individuals in a subculture known for "rugged individualism," as one of our ideological opponents used to put it, I'm all for individual and individualistic statements, and don't hold out much hope of us ever finding anything to draw us together as a group. (Think gaud!)

The only change I would make is "I am American!" To say "America" seems, to me, to be too inclusive, and the whole point of America, to me, is that there's room for everybody.

As I stated on page 5 of our November, 2001, issue, in response to Gloria "Wendy" Ray's letter to a Georgia newspaper ordering all atheists to "Get off of our country":

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I've been told to get out of the land of my birth and my heritage (a blend of European Colonial settler, Native American, and recent immigrant -- how much more "American" does one get?). Folks have insisted that I depart from this nation whose Declaration of Independence and Constitution boast the signatures of three of my ancestors. But never until now have I been ordered to "get off of our country" by somebody who pretends to be even more American than I (but who is, in fact, no less of an American than I am, since there are no degrees of American citizenship)!

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But that's just me. I honor you both for being able to see what you see in it as well as having the nerve and the pride to put that thing on your car! I wonder how many people would want one of those! Over the years we've been swamped with requests to come up with an atheistic symbol. I don't think a symbol would work, but I'm still holding out hope for slogans. Unfortunately, slogans have this stigma of oversimplifying things, and I wouldn't want to see atheism seemingly oversimplified, but I think that most truisms can be reduced to a bumper sticker. Not all of them, of course, but most of them!

Cliff Walker
Positive Atheism Magazine
Six years of service to
    people with no reason to believe

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Material by Cliff Walker (including unsigned editorial commentary) is copyright ©1995-2006 by Cliff Walker. Each submission is copyrighted by its writer, who retains control of the work except that by submitting it to Positive Atheism, permission has been granted to use the material or an edited version: (1) on the Positive Atheism web site; (2) in Positive Atheism Magazine; (3) in subsequent works controlled by Cliff Walker or Positive Atheism Magazine (including published or posted compilations). Excerpts not exceeding 500 words are allowed provided the proper copyright notice is affixed. Other use requires permission; Positive Atheism will work to protect the rights of all who submit their writings to us.