Friday, September 23, 2011

White House petitions

The White House has launched "We the People", a new online petition service. If a petition reaches a certain number of signatures within a set time, it will "generate an official response." Currently, the goal is 5000 signatures in 30 days. This is potentially an excellent opportunity to make atheists' voices heard. With that in mind, here are some petitions I recommend you view and consider signing:

Discontinue church tax breaks and instead have them apply for non-profit status. Currently, religious organizations are free to discriminate in hiring and firing, etc, and they have been actively petitioning for this "right" to continue.

Refrain from vetoing Palestine's application for statehood. Why shouldn't Israel and Palestine be on closer to equal terms? The inequality breeds terrorism. The root of the conflict is religion, but equality has the potential to "civilize" the conflict.

Remove the phrase "under god" from the Pledge of Allegiance. "Under God" has only been part of the Pledge since the mid-1950s. It was added during the McCarthy era, when paranoia and hatred of communism ruled. Obviously, our founding fathers would not have supported the inclusion of such an exclusive religious message, although the Pledge itself dates from only 1892. Anyway, children recite it in school every day, and I hate indoctrination.

Remove the phrase "In God We Trust" from money. This was also added during the fifties McCarthy era.

Currently, those are the only petitions I thought relevant to atheism. Definitely check out the "We the People" site for other important issues and updates!

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