What can we atheists do about our reputation?

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This topic contains 26 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  jakelafort 1 day, 3 hours ago.

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  • #40030

    Unseen
    Participant

    Seventh Day Adventists are only .5% of the American population. They are weird in many ways, yet they operate 168 hospitals worldwide, 138 nursing homes and retirement centers, 442 clinics and dispensaries, and 34 orphanages and children’s homes.

    The Catholic Church runs 600 hospitals and 1,400 long-term care and other health facilities in all 50 states, the association is the largest group of non-profit health care providers in the nation. That’s just in the United States!

    Atheists+agnostics represent 7% of the U.S. population (a number 14 times higher than that of the Adventists).

    Atheist hospitals: 0

    Is there a lost opportunity here?

    What can we do/should we be doing?

    #40067

    TheEncogitationer
    Participant

    Unseen,

    I thought I told you about this earlier: Get rid of the requirement for a Government-issued “Certificate Of Need” to build a hospital, then Atheists and anybody else can pool their butter-‘n’-egg money and build a hospital and hire the Doctors, Nurses, and Medical Staff to run it.

    Also, stop the American Medical Association from lobbying government to limit the building of Medical Schools, and stop them from limiting the number of residencies and internships which lead to a greater supply of available Doctors, Nurses, and Medical Staff.

    I had a very bad encounter with all of this just this past weekend. More To Come.

    #40069

    jakelafort
    Participant

    Yeah Enco just let the market handle all of those niche opportunities to be magnanimous. It is not like Businesses won’t prioritize profits over public welfare.

    As to lobbying you got that part right. But lets see, why is our government sold out to big corporations? How is it that they write the laws through their oracles the legislators? Oh yeah it is those magnanimous free market forces again.

    #40070

    _Robert_
    Participant

    I have seen studies and polls that suggest many top scientists creating value in medicine and the various technologies (that could possibly save our species) are atheists. They may not even care enough about religion (or nonbelief) to work under that banner. Conversely many believers are prone to or espouse pseudoscience….and are generally useless or harmful.

    #40071

    Unseen
    Participant

    I didn’t raise this topic to talk only about hospitals. That was just an example of how religious organizations affect public perception. And they do good. I’ve been in hospitals several times and with one exception they were all affiliated with Catholicism. I remember being visited by a Catholic chaplain who asked me if I’d be interested in praying with him. I told him that’s not my thing, and he left. No pressure.

    Our reputation is such that anything like an “Atheist General Hospital” would be avoided like the plague by most religious people.

     

    #40072

    Unseen
    Participant

    What is the face of atheism to most in the public? What can we do about it?

    Don’t we spend a lot of energy telling people that their core beliefs are nonsense?

    What a way to win friends and influence people.

    #40073

    _Robert_
    Participant

    LOL, yeah, that kid who breaks the bad news about Santa Claus.

    #40074

    jakelafort
    Participant

    Here is an idea.

    Have an atheist organization that is dedicating to outing lies and exposing BS. Make it nonpartisan. Public figures who tell whoppers. Call em out. The world of woo? Expose it. Perhaps an affiliation with the Skeptical Inquirer for the world of woo. Fake scientist who just have degrees to lend credence to creationism or any other religious nonsense. Out them. Politicians who are lying or who are serving financial interests contrary to their espoused objectives. This has to be done without political agendas. There is plenty of lying bullshit on both sides. Same thing with news media. CNN, MSNBC, FOX-all major bullshitters who are more concerned with advertising and their agenda then truth. Major mouthpieces with podcasts or big audiences on net should be scrutinized.

    If it works it will be a way of associating atheists with honesty and integrity. It would be a monumental public service to have a trusted evaluator in a world miles deep in BS.

    #40075

    _Robert_
    Participant

    Believers don’t care about the truth. And secular humanism as a concept is a relative newborn when considering religions have had thousands of years to prove their value. And they just arbitrarily get decide which causes will benefit versus a logical broad societal approach. More like Oprah giving away cars than anything.

    Atheism has no real meaning as it relies on the fantasies to itself exist. Humanism would be the preferred label IMHO.

    #40076

    jakelafort
    Participant

    Theists do so care about the truth. As long as it aligns with their preconceived truth! I am not asserting that
    having an atheist’s foundation as aforementioned will shake many believers of their theism. Nor am i denying that
    theism predisposes believers to being more credulous in other areas of BS.

    However the association with reliable investigation and exposure of politicians, conspiracy, political media and others is a very positive one. As long as the journalists, investigators and authors fail to betray political leanings and give the appearance of objectivity it would be a winner without a chicken dinner. Elevation of atheists by association in a craven and falling nation…

    #40077

    Unseen
    Participant

    In Atheists We Distrust (Scientific American article)

    From the article:

    Gervais and his colleagues presented participants with a story about a person who accidentally hits a parked car and then fails to leave behind valid insurance information for the other driver. Participants were asked to choose the probability that the person in question was a Christian, a Muslim, a rapist, or an atheist. They thought it equally probable the culprit was an atheist or a rapist, and unlikely the person was a Muslim or Christian.

    • This reply was modified 1 week, 1 day ago by  Unseen.
    #40079

    jakelafort
    Participant

    What if the question were presented as follows: A five year old boy has been raped repeatedly. Was it a Catholic priest, atheist, Muslim or Satanist?

    #40081

    TheEncogitationer
    Participant

    Unseen,

    Here is what happened in my case, and fighting against Government barriers to the provision of health care could be part of the solution you seek for the reputation of Atheism and Atheist organizations:

    The weekend before Thanksgiving, Friday, I was struck by a stomach virus that had me so woosy and nauseated, (Yes, there are other ailments besides COVID-19.) I was unable to see or walk straight at my workplace. At the point I started wobbling, I knew I had to get to a garbage can to woof my guts out multiple times. I first thought I could drive myself home, but fortunately, I just napped in the car until nightfall, when my managers and an Ossifer Friendly found me and decided to call an ambulance for me, for which I am very grateful. I then took a ride to the local hospital where the fun commenced.

    I was first put on the cardiac ward, since they seen from my vaccine card that I had all my COVID-19 shots and booster shot and my EKG was irregular. After that normalized, they sent me to a different ward, where I was to wait for a CT scan and Ultrasound.

    CT scans require that the patient have no food or drink before the procedure. Unfortunately, there was only one CT machine and one Ultrasound station for the whole hospital, devices limited by Government requirements for “Certificates Of Need,” and there was a queue of patients waiting to use the facilities.

    As a result of this, I went without food or water for a total of 31 hours, 24 of which were while I was in their “care.”

    Also, in the interim, there was only one Doctor taking care of the entire floor, which is a result of Government in collusion with the AMA limiting the training, internships, and residencies of Doctors. This delayed the administration of anti-nauseants in my IV (also controlled by Government “Certificates Of Need,”) which delayed my ability to get a shower safely.

    Thus for most of my stay, I was sleeping in my clothes and marinating in my own filth, which could have meant a deadly infection if I injured myself with something as simple as a sheet burn or a leaky IV making blood contact with pathogens.

    I finally got my CT Scan and Ultrasound and meals and a shower thereafter and was released Sunday, and the staff were friendly the whole time, but this was a ridiculous delay in care caused ultimately by Government impediments to care that simply did not have to be.

    Fight this and anyone who has had to suffer through it will thank you forever! The Physicians job is “First, do no harm.” Keeping them on task by getting Government out of the way will make Atheists and Secularists the darling of all who need critical medical care!

    #40082

    TheEncogitationer
    Participant

    Unseen,

    One thing we all could do this Holiday Season when making donations is to leave a little Post-It Note or card with the donation that says: “You don’t have to believe to give or do good.” And, of course, mark it with the one-stroke Atheist symbol or the Atheist Atom.

    I did this with a duffle bag of clothes I recently donated to the Salvation Army. (Yes, I know of their awful record during Prohibition and their modern-day record with LGBTQ people, but they are the largest game in my town for dealing with immediate survival needs of homeless street people.)

    Little things like this will at least pry open preconceptions people may have about Atheists, if not inspire full-on doubt about notions of religion and benevolence being one and the same.

    #40083

    Unseen
    Participant

    @TheEnco…

    That was one wild tale of woe. Is there an article you can recommend that documents those restrictions all in one place?

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