Lawsuit against American Atheists

It may seem strange to readers if I stayed silent about the law suit that is has been filed against American Atheists by AJ Johnson because I was quoted in the article that drew wider attention to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit comes at an unexpected time, as David Silverman has recently received kudos from some members of the secular community for supporting secular women and feminist ideals. One blogger [me] has called him the “Golden man for Secularism and Feminism”, stating that Silverman has shown leadership by “standing with women as allies”. Skeptic Ink

I have responded to the lifting of my quote out of context, which crucially made no judgments on how matters of race are treated in the atheist movement (which the lawsuit is about for most part):

As the blogger who made the pun on Silverman’s name can I give the context which was regarding the appalling trolling of secular women via Twitter/internet which David was attacking via Twitter at that moment:

“[David Silverman] has shown exactly what we all wanted Ronald Lindsay to have done unequivocally at Women in Secularism 2. Show backbone, and upfront leadership standing with women as allies at the trolls out there who intimidate, ridicule, and harass women in the feminist movement. Clearly he welcomes critical measured responses. Victimisation of others is unacceptable.” [Emphasis added]

I will watch what happens regarding the lawsuit with interest and try not to prejudge till the court gives a conclusion or an amicable agreement is reached.

My concern is how my quote was used may suggest I side with one over the other. I would need more information, and forming a judgement on the sidelines based on others views who are not party to actual events is never a smart move.

I have formed a social media acquaintance with AJ Johnson – dedicating my blog post on June 14 (several days before the above article) on religious freedom to her because of the conversation she initiated on encouraging religious believers to join the secular movement. Something I agree with, hence my post.


I am not party to the goings on of the lawsuit, and the legal process will hopefully resolve. If there are any systematic issues that need addressing I hope this will help to shed light on them, and they get fixed. What I am not going to do is prejudge the issue especially without viewing all documents.

Because as a non American white man plenty of others better qualified to speak on these matters. There are wider issues to be highlighted than the lawsuit.

Some follow up links:

Race, American Atheists and the movement

American Atheist Response to lawsuit

Article written by John Sargeant on Homo economicus’ Weblog

Follow @JPSargeant78


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Filed under atheism, secular

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