Hi - I'm writing an article for the BBC News website on workplace discrimination against atheists. I have seen a few stories on this site about people who felt excluded by their co-workers or even lost their job after expressing their beliefs. I would like to talk to people who have been through such an experience. You can contact me directly - my email is firstname.lastname@example.org - or share your stories in this forum.
BBC News, Washington
**Moderator's note: After our initial message of caution to all of you we've had an opportunity to confirm that Mr. Wheeler is indeed who he says he is. Knowing this, we'd like to encourage everyone to please share their stories of discrimination in the workplace with Mr. Wheeler. We shouldn't let the opportunity of a BBC News reporter telling the world the story of very real anti-atheist discrimination pass by! He is on a deadline so you must contact him as soon as you're able to.
I have not been discriminated against at work, which is surprising to me, really. I teach at an elementary school in small-town Georgia. I have a few co-workers and students' parents as friends on Facebook where I am openly listed as "Atheist." I assume they just figure I'm going to Hell and pity me and so leave me alone, lol. Or maybe just not the right parents know yet. I did have one parent who friended me on FB and then de-friended me the very next day. It doesn't take a genius to figure out why :)
I do EXPECT some discrimination in the future and I'm not looking forward to it. At the moment though, I have been lucky.
If you're feeling daring, have a science book out at a PTO meeting.
I am happy to report that I appear to be surrounded by non-believers. It may be because I am surrounded by biologists at a university. Interesting that those who study life don't have to invoke the existence of the metaphysical to understand life. The subject never comes up except when referring to bewildering creationists, perhaps in a one line joke. I hardly know anyone who believes in deities.
Read somewhere that 93 percent of all biologists & astronomers are atheists. Hmm.
It comes with the territory one must assume. I regularly attend the Denton, (TX) Atheist Meetup group as often as I can as it involves a 42-mile round trip. Denton is a college twon with University of North Texas and Texas Woman's College in the city limits. We meet every other Sunday afternoon @ 1230 and one would think that we'd have many more people there, especially students; however, we rarely have more than 9 or 10, well, it is Texas after all. The Texas state school board trys all the time to dumb-down every school curriculum in the state and by default others as well because of the number of text books the state buys.
There's always a sign on the table that reads Denton Atheists and we do occasionally get some funny looks and even a comment, but the owner/manager likes us being there and open about being a meeting of atheists. It's a fun group. Today we plan to protest at a big church in Lewisville where the program is "Reclaim Texas for Christ". It's time to get louder everywhere and follow the Freedom From Religion Foundation headed by that ex crapstian fundie Dan Barker whom I was so fortunate to hear at a lecture at UNT last October; he's a great speaker for non-believers since he's been there, deep in the fundie movement that all atheists should confront when ever and where ever possible,
Wow! I would love to join your group, Ken! And I would love to protest with you too. I live in Ohio though. I think it's awesome that you are doing this!!
I live in northern Alabama and have held many jobs (looking to find something I like doing). I have had several times of being outcast and treated unfairly because of my views.
When working at a food establishment that was family owned and operated me and some co-workers were sitting around on break and talking (all God followers) and I was asked what church I go to. I told them I was an athiest and they started asking me questions about it. All very good questions I might add when my boss (my uncle) came up to me and told me to stop spouting such bullshit and that I did believe I was just fooling myself. Also that if I talked about it again I would be fired on the spot.
Another was when I worked at a factory and the people around me were believers. One day they were saying thank Jesus for this and that all things that they got through hard work. I asked them if they ever thought that maybe it was the hard work that got them that and they started asking me about my beliefs. I told them I was an athiest and after that day they spent all day everyday telling me I was going to hell and making comments about how I was a devil worshiper. After reporting it to HR nothing was done. When asked why I was told I should convert so there would be less problems. After talking to my floor manager he moved me somewhere else and one day after seeing him in the break room I was told that he wouldn't have an anti-american, devil worshiping, creation sent from hell working for him. After getting moved it was a lot better except the once in a while I would see or pass one from my old line who would make comments.
I have more just message me if you want any.
Wow! Good job standing up for yourself, Christopher. I respect you! I like what you said about how it is hard work that got them where they are today. Seems logical to me.It seems strange to me when religious people think the good things in their life are because of Jesus/god despite the fact that they worked hard and earned the good things.
Don't remember getting into any discussions about religion while at work. I felt the discrimination of being a woman working under mostly men - being paid according to gender was part of this.
I work in the media and as everyone knows, we're all godless liberals in the media so I'd have to say no, I haven't suffered discrimination at work. On the other hand, we do enjoy taking the piss out of theists though... :-)
I'm in the militarty, so I'd have to say that any discrimination I have experienced stems more from my dislike of hockey than from my beliefs.
Well, that's understandable, a Canadian who doesn't like hockey... sheesh, that's like an evangelical who doesn't like money... :-)