As a woman, as a mother and as a student surrounded by creative young men and women, I am often chastised by others for not being tolerant of religion. I am told that being an Atheist requires just as much assumption as being religious and that in my dismissal of all faiths I am ignoring the good that religion brings into the world.
I do not believe that there is any good that religion, any religion, is doing in the world.
I think that every faith promotes ignorance, separation, discrimination and hatred.
When people contrast their faiths to those more extreme (often the Taliban) I compare them.
I do this because I am intolerant of the crutch of religion. I do this because when someone tells me that they are Christian, but have nothing against homosexuals, it rings about as honest as a Neo-Nazi telling me they have nothing against minorities.
I find their accusations that I would be happier in my "traditional place as a woman," to be hateful and coming from a place of spiteful ignorance.
I am aggravated as others try to hang a label of "agnostic" on me, when what I really am is an atheist.
I have no doubts that I have made the right choice to abandon the myths of my mother and her mother. There is no question in my mind.
People have said to me that they cling to the belief in gods out of a hope for cosmic justice.
I think that it is the belief in these gods that create most of the injustices we suffer in our lives. Our feelings of frustrations, our self-imposed limitations on our hopes for love and happiness, our misery in the feelings of constant scrutiny from an unloving, constantly judging omnipotent figure of our own design, all of these things are the waste product of an out-dated hate machine.
I find nothing redeeming in religion. Religion flaunts opulence in the face of starving believers and implants hatred in the innocent and inquisitive minds of children. It creates division where there should be none.
I am not tolerant of religion any more than I would tolerate any other form of indoctrinated bigotry.