It’s an ugly word and an even uglier state. I read an article and shared it on Facebook yesterday. Over 300 comments later (some deleted by the poster), I’m not sure some people get it.
An upstate South Carolina soup kitchen denied an atheist group’s request to pass out care packages to the patrons. It’s well within the soup kitchen’s rights to deny the request, but the director’s comments about it we’re anything but Christian:
“This is a ministry to serve God” she said. “We stand on the principles of God. Do they (atheists) think that our guests are so ignorant that they don’t know what an atheist is? Why are they targeting us? They don’t give any money. I wouldn’t want their money.”
I take issue with her comments and see them as bigoted. Some agree with me and some disagree. I understand not wanting an outside group helping in a church-sponsored facility. I don’t understand why a difference in belief translates into ‘a disservice to the community’ when the groups share a common goal.
Is it a denial based on the myth that atheists only care about themselves? Is it a superiority thing? Is it just the old lesson I was taught about not associating with the unequally yoked? I am honestly asking, not looking for a fight.
Maybe I just expect too much from people in general. I believe we all are equal. Our different points of view, ways of life, sizes, and flavors are beautiful. Anytime we can recognize and celebrate our similarities is beautiful as well.