Progressive Atheism

What would you do?

There is nothing inherently political about atheism in the sense that knowing someone is an atheist does not necessarily tell you anything about his or her political leanings. At the same time, it is no secret that the majority of atheists, at least in the United States, describe themselves as left-of-center when it comes to politics.

According to data recently released from the Baylor Religion survey, 73.1% of Americans responded "agree" or "strongly agree" to the statement "God has a plan for me." Of those who agreed with this statement, 96% also said that the government should be smaller.

According to The Christian Post,

Those who believe in an engaged God also tend to believe the government is too involved in Americans' affairs, able-bodied people should not receive unemployment checks, and success has little to do with luck.
In other words, those who believe in a god that has a plan for them tend to hold right-leaning political attitudes. That is hardly surprising. We know that the evangelical fundamentalist brand of Christianity has been deliberately intermingled with right-wing politics, and it has been this way for a while.

What I do find interesting is the continued reluctance to accept atheists on the part of many of those in the progressive movement. While some progressive individuals are accepting of atheists, this sort of acceptance seems rare among those with any sort of clout in the movement. I cannot help wondering if the creation and promotion of some sort of progressive atheism would be better for both atheists and progressives in the long run than the tendency of many progressives to cling to liberal Christianity and assorted New Age bullshit.

Update: As it turns out, there was a high-profile attempt to create something like a politically progressive atheism a couple years after this post. It was called Atheism+, and it did not fare well.