Thursday, January 10, 2013

A message as Interim President

As I assume most of you who read this blog know, I recently took over from Zac Bos as president of the Boston Atheists. There has been and continues to be problems for feminists in the secular movement, and from my experience women clearly do not feel especially welcome at our events. As a reaction to that I wanted to say something about inclusiveness and the marginalized and was promoted by a BA member's blog post about feminism & secularism and conflict resolution. 

Here I am speaking to the members of the Boston Atheists specifically. 

If you feel mistreated, uncomfortable, or unwelcome at an event that we are hosting please come to me and let me know. Particularly if I'm the problem. This goes for everyone but doubly so for the marginalized. 

Furthermore I want to say that I am blind to my privileges like everyone else; especially as a white, straight, cisgendered man. 

If others treat you poorly out of blindness, I will try and shine a light. But if you see that I am acting blindly, please show me the way.


  1. new Boston Atheists meetup attendee here.

    I've been an "online atheist" - following various blogs, You tube subscriptions, forums etc. for a number of years. I am aware of the recent focus on women, minority, and transgendered peoples being underrepresented, harassed, and feeling unwelcome in the public atheist community The Experimental Breakfast was my first foray into the live atheist world. Like you, I am a white, straight, cisgendered man and am aware that these aspects of my being are often granted privileged status which I blindly expect. So, what to do? I strive to live up to my ethical standards of "be kind and actively promote dignity for all." There is a paradox I haven't resolved. Like you, I wish to say, or at least convey the message, "But if you see that I am acting blindly, please show me the way." However that does place some of the onus of correcting my privilege on the marginalized person. As I said, it's not resolved.

    I recently came across a site that has brought a good deal of illumination. It's sarcastic as hell and in a way that left quite an impression on me. It's called Derailing for Dummies
    The first two topics address the "show me the way" paradox but the rest of the articles can be a useful way to broaden ones awareness of how privilege operates.

    Good tidings.

    1. I mean this more than I usually do: thank you.