December 15, 2011

Atheist Holidays?

Eric Steinhart (Camels With Hammers) recently wrote a post in which he claimed:
If atheism is ever to become a successful way of life, appealing to a large number of people, then atheism needs to provide holidays.
atheistHis argument appears to be that early Christians Christianized pagan holidays, that this was advantageous to them, and so we'd better be prepared to do the same. I don't find this relevant to the question of atheist holidays. Atheists are not Christians; why should we co-opt their methods? In fact, I can think of no compelling reason why the spread of atheism should be contingent upon the creation of atheist holidays.

I don't have any problem with atheists who want to create and celebrate holidays. My problem is with those who suggest that doing so is somehow essential to the atheist movement. All this accomplishes is driving a wedge between those who want atheist holidays and those of us who find folly in such things.

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