For years now, I have struggled with the idea that I may loose friends and family because of my beliefs, or lack thereof. I've sat on the sidelines while people speak of their god, usually just nodding along in agreement. In the recent months, I've noticed that I have been unable to hold onto this mask. I no longer held my head down in prayer, just waiting for it to be over. I hold my head up and do not acknowledge the ritual. Some may feel that this is disrespectful. I do not feel this way at all.
I've slowly began to realize that are many atheists/agnostics in the South, mostly choosing the same path I was on. It really got me thinking... How are we ever going to be free from the lack of understanding if we are not out there in our communities? In other words, we need to show the people that we, atheists, are here to stay. We are people, we have children, we have morals, and we most defiantly have RIGHTS.
Yesterday started my campaign, beginning with "A" week. I changed my profile picture to the big "A". Though, I'm sure most people will just think it goes along with my real name (Alisha). To combat that, I posted a link to the "A" week's facebook page. I hope those that question my profile picture will follow the link.
As of today, I have 185 friends, all of which are people that I know. Many are family members who are devout in their Christian faith. I would say that only around 15-20 of those people previously knew that I am an atheist.
My goal is to push my atheism through in a positive light. Who knows, maybe I can bring out a few people with me.
One thing is for sure, I will no longer hide my atheism.