You know that feeling that almost all of us had of being different (if you grew up in the US or a religious area) for simply not believing? Well, many of us are leaving the next generation to feel the same. We need to be sure to speak up for those whom have the courage to speak openly. Far too often we cower in the corner only to have one of us left to speak alone against the crowd.
Today I posted a link on Facebook to the Tennessee Anti-Evolution Bill. I grew up in a religious area. Creationism has taken hold. So I got responses about religion and creationism right away. I was gentle in handling it. The more bees with honey approach. It will leave the door open to later discussions too. A couple of Atheists were there too. So I wasn't alone. But the reality is that four other atheists (semi-closeted) contacted me privately in addition to what was on the wall. We had a majority, but it didn't look like it. We certainly had rationality and I had two of them say that I'm smart. And pretty [Bats eyes].
It's not a question of making sure that you defend everyone every time. Most of us don't need it. But the more we look like a majority, they sooner accepting us will become a requirement. Don't let that next generation coming up feel like we have. You know what I'm getting at. If you can't be their back up, you didn't deserve any before either. We can't complain about not being treated as equal if we don't stand up to claim that equality and say come and take it away from me. Find strength in numbers. I'm speaking directly to the lurkers whom don't stand up already. Don't make the next generation have to stand up for your failures to do so.