Dear Christians, This is Why I Write About Being Harmed By You

Until recently, I believed I could quietly live my life as an example of what a Secular Humanist is and have that combat negative stereotypes people have about atheists, and that eventually it would lead to tolerance and acceptance. Because in a lot of ways, I am not so different from a lot of people. I take care of my family, I work, I enjoy my hobbies. My life is meaningful. I have a drive to improve the world, so I went into counseling and worked for several years with people who are impoverished. Now my focus is shifting to reforming schools so they will be friendlier to children who have disabilities.

Two things changed recently that led me to conclude I can no longer be a silent example. One being the realization that just by being a moral atheist, I am a threat to Christians. I know one Christian attempted to dismiss the harassment I experienced by Christians in a previous post by saying they would have harassed me regardless of their religious beliefs. The thing is, Christianity teaches that only Christians are saved and people who don’t believe are condemned to hell.

So these Christians tend to believe atheists must be either immoral people or ignorant to justify having a god who is A. good and B. willing to condemn people to eternal torture.

But then they find out that I am not ignorant, and very, very moral, and this tends to send Christians into a crisis, because how could their good old God send an otherwise good person to hell? By being who I am, I threaten their beliefs. And once they realize it, they tend to take it out by harassing me for not conforming to their view of the evil atheist.

This is a problem intrinsic to Christianity and other faiths that preach that salvation comes only through following their faith. And I have had to contend with more than my fair share of Christians who feel that the ends justify the means, and anything goes with regard to saving my soul. Today I got quite a few new Christians commenting on my blog, and all they are doing is regurgitating that same stuff I’ve heard a million times before. And I know where the road to debating them ends.

The other thing that happened to change my approach was initially a good thing. It was gay marriage becoming legal in the US. I was real happy for my friends in the LGBT community when this happened. However, the backlash from the Christian community against this has been horrible, because now Christians are claiming they are discriminated against, which in the US is laughable, and they are introducing legislation to deprive members of the LGBT community their civil rights while enshrining their “right” as Christians to discriminate against that group, while under the galling name of “religious freedom.”

I have been harassed by Christians all my life. I have been threatened, blackmailed, assaulted, and doxxed by Christians. Christians are privileged in the US, especially in the Bible Belt. They have representatives in the house, senate, and the White House. They are the majority. Despite films such as “God’s Not Dead” I have never had a school teacher try to force atheism on me, but I’ve had plenty of teachers shove Christianity down my throat. I have worried about losing my job because of my religious beliefs, something my Christian husband (yes, I am married to a Christian, we’ve been together 15 years, chew on that) has never had to worry about.

So, keeping this in mind, just imagine how that must feel. I have been persecuted by Christians all my life, and now they are claiming to fight for religious freedom and using it as a front to legalize their ability to discriminate against others. This is infuriating and rage inducing. This is why I am angry right now. And this is why I can’t keep silent.

I am now going to be very vocal about all of the suffering and discrimination I have endured at the hands of Christians. I want Christians to be aware of the pain they are causing. I want Christians to own it, and then I want them to stop being jerks to people who have different ways of thinking and believing. I want them to grow up and learn that they have to share this world with people who have different beliefs.

And, I know the odds are not in my favor. It is very hard to get a privileged group of people to wake up to the harm they are doing. I know black people have a hard time getting white people to own it. Gay people have a hard time getting straight people to own it. Women have a hard time getting men to own it. I know Christians aren’t going to like what I have to say, because it doesn’t help them to feel good about themselves. And I want that. I want Christians to think about what they are doing.

I am not writing for Christians to proselytize or attempt to convert me, but they will. I want Christians to respect that I see things differently and think that that is okay. This is a rather tall goal, because of what I discussed earlier. Thing is, Christians, it’s a skill you’re going to have to learn. The world is getting smaller, and more diverse, and just because people do not subscribe to your belief systems, it does not mean they are immoral, suffering, and in need of saving. Plenty of people live meaningful and moral lives without Christianity. I am one of them, and frankly, it is condescending to suggest otherwise.

I also want Christians to be aware of the harm they are causing, so may be they will think before they condemn groups of people or pass laws to deprive them of their rights. Once again, I know this is a tall order. I am taking the long view.

If you are a Christian and you really want to help, here’s what to do.

  1. Say, “I’m sorry to hear you went through that. There was no excuse for it.”
  2. “How can I help?”

Any other response, and I will give you an education in how you are contributing to a culture that is oppressive for people who aren’t Christians and how you are part of the problem. I have no interest in being a Christian. My life is wondrous and meaningful and the way I see it, a Christian worldview would detract from what I find to be wondrous and meaningful. But if you do comment otherwise, it will be you who will be educated.

 

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4 thoughts on “Dear Christians, This is Why I Write About Being Harmed By You

  1. ofhisgloryblog

    Friend I think I think I and a lot of others have tried that approach, we said sorry, you said no i don’t want your sorry I want you to own that fault, what should we do, beg at your feet? Well let me tell you this friend, if my God tells me or another christian to do that so that you can peace, then we would gladly do it.
    I am not afraid of your or your threats, I know my God is with me, and I know that He loves you still, even when it is you who is persecuting the Church of God.
    You know friend, the crazy thing about Bible, its that that I cannot even get angry at you, for rejecting my views and trying to make some other meanings of what I want to say. God wants
    me to love you. And yes I will try my best.
    So I tell you again.
    I am sorry for all the hurt that you have received. But no two person is similar friend. Like the way I generalized women, and I condemned the very idea of it, just because I was abused. Is like telling Apple, you should bankrupt because my I phone which you sent me, is bloody not working!
    And you know what response they will give you, they will replace your phone.
    So you asked for a better Christian, and God gave you your husband, you asked for a Christian whom you can just condemn and get your frustration out, He gave you me, so if you want to tell anything you are free. I won’t judge you, for who am I to do so.
    And for your kind information I believe our Dear Pope Francis, is accepting Homosexuals to the Church, isn’t he?
    Friend I live in India, and here we are just 2.3 percent, and here we are persecuted by your so called friends in Islam and Hinduism. Just read this you will find http://christianpersecutionindia.blogspot.in/

    I’m not making it up, just check out for yourself, TYPE IN Persecution for Christians in India, and you will amazed to see you are not the only one who was persecuted.

    I tell you what friend, I’m not going to frustrate myself on them, for I chose to forgive them, they are not Hindus or Muslims, they are fanatics. Nothing else. One who oppresses the poor, the under privileged in the name of God is a fanatic, and I can assure you, they have no place in Christianity. For excuse me, this is the Religion of Love. not Hatred.
    God Bless you friend.

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    1. roianna Post author

      You may have said sorry, but since you did not include that there is no excuse for how I’ve been treated AND you have overstepped my boundaries and preached at me repeatedly when I told you it wasn’t wanted. You also did not ask how you can help. Every comment you have made on my blog shows me you are not interested in learning to co-exist with other religions, therefore, you are the problem. The reason I was harassed was because Christians could not recognize my right to believe differently than they do. And you have not done one thing to show me that you respect my right to do that. So your apology does not seem sincere, because you are furthering the damage.
      I live in the US, and I focused my comments about persecution specifically in the US. I know Christians are persecuted in other countries, and it is wrong. I agree the problem is not religions, but fanaticism. Thing is, everything you have said to me shows that you are a Christian fanatic! You can’t respect my right to have a different point of view and have been extremely condescending towards me.
      As for Pope Francis, gays and lesbians still can’t get married in the Catholic church, so they are discriminated against. Further, the Catholic church has had charities refuse to allow people who are LGBT to adopt children, which is discrimination. Further, in case you missed it, Christians in the US are passing laws to discriminate against the LGBT community. While some Christians are accepting, there is a lot of hatred and discrimination towards members of the LGBT community in the US from Christians.
      Without awareness, there can be no change. Christians in the US need to be aware of how they are being destructive so they can change. That is why I am writing.

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      1. ofhisgloryblog

        Friend you do know what you speak I know you are hurt but if you keep on hurting yourself with that then you are no good than the Christians who have persecuted you. For I can see the same hatered you have for them too, you did not get a chancr to beat the hell out of them. And I’m sure in the first chance you will do this. However May God forgive you. And May he remake you give you a life, make you alive. You are just dead. And God doesn’t want you to stay like that he wants to love you. It’s okay. Your life your choices who i am to say something. God bless

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      2. roianna Post author

        Wow, it’s amazing I haven’t beaten my Christian husband. I have no desire to beat anyone. I have never even struck someone in my life. Here is the thing, you are smearing me because I am an atheist and I am asking for respect. Further, you are saying it is OK that I was harassed and assaulted because I would have done the same thing.

        Here is the thing, you started out saying you wanted to be my friend, but when you found me to be unlike you expected, you got mad and slandered me. Just like what I pointed out happens in this article. I have been slandered by Christians all my life because I do not conform to their notion of the hate filled atheist. You are doing the exact same thing they are.

        Further, when Christians speak out against being persecuted by Muslims or Hindus in India, are they filled with hate? Are their experiences not to be trusted because they have been hurt? How can Christians in India let people know they have been wronged if they are silent? How can change happen?

        I am not staying silent about being bullied by Christians because I want change to occur. I want Christians to learn to agree to disagree an to stop discriminating against people. But by talking, you show illustrate every wrong committed against me by Christians. You are a bully, and I am calling you out. I am judging you by your actions, not by your beliefs.

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