Anti-Atheist Atheists

by Luke Muehlhauser on January 25, 2009 in General Atheism

Alonzo Fyfe wrote about Anti-Atheist Bigotry Among Atheists. He notes that:

Research shows that cultural prejudices tend even to penetrate into members of the target group. Blacks tend to show more anti-black prejudice than anti-white prejudice. Women tend to see even other women in stereotypical roles.

..This tendency of a target group to take to heart society’s expressed attitudes towards them helps to explain why the suicide rate among teenage homosexuals is so much higher than it is among teenagers in general.

…A great many atheists internalize anti-atheist bigotry and turn it into self-hatred in the same way that homosexuals internalize anti-gay bigotry. This makes atheists docile and motivates them to submit to whatever the theist community demands – adopting a political attitude that, “We must never to anything that might anger the theist. If an atheist angers a theist it is always the atheist who is wrong, and who deserves our condemnation.”

I agree with the first two paragraphs above. But have atheists internalized the prejudices against them just as gays and blacks and women have internalized prejudices against themselves?

All we’d need to answer this question is a few well-conducted polls of atheists.

We don’t have those polls yet, but I just don’t see anti-atheist bigotry among atheists. Are atheists filled with self-hatred related to their atheism? Do they think more highly of theists than of atheists? This doesn’t describe the atheists I know. That’s a pretty small sample, but I don’t see anti-atheist atheists in the media or on the internet, either.

If anti-atheist bigotry among atheists is a serious problem, I’d like to see some of it. It’s quite possible I only hang with the atheist “cream of the crop,” and that’s why I don’t see it.

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