to the charge that atheism is somehow “elitist,” I say: “of course. who cares?” The forefronts of knowledge have always been, and in some sense must be, the bastion of those who are privileged along some dimension or other. … We can agree that it would be “cruel and pointless” to try to talk these people out of their theism. But labeling atheism itself an “intellectual luxury” constitutes a nearsighted attempt to imbue atheism with the connotation that it’s unnecessary and frivolous. Please don’t forget that in other contexts, the non-religious do important work towards curtailing religiously-motivated harms (female genital mutilation, anyone? allowing children with easily cured medical conditions to die?) At those times, it is keeping quiet about unjustified religious claims (“thinking differently” from atheists!) which would be cruel.
Kevin Vallier: "If you have gone to college and you do knowledge work for a living, the pursuit of truth ought to be of significant (though probably never overriding) importance to you. Theists of this class are aggravating, because they seem to be either willfully ignorant of science and philosophy, or capable of withstanding huge amounts of cognitive dissonance." Seriously? I hope I'm not one of these unfortunate souls.
- Making sure that all public policy and judicial acts are science-based or at least scientifically informed and not explicitly counter to what we know to be true.
- Getting more funding for scientific research, while maintaining the political independence of science.