For centuries, African-American culture has been much influenced by the black church and the Christian faith. So being both black and atheist can be a lonely and isolating experience for most. I’m a witness to how people can be so unforgiving towards atheists. My family, has given me until December, 2013 to find my son and I a place to stay as I cannot stay with her under her roof because I am an atheist. Things haven’t changed, I’m still jobless and December is coming in fast.
Less than one-half of one percent of Blacks identify themselves as atheists.
80% of Black Americans say religion is VERY IMPORTANT in their lives, compared to only 50% of U.S. adults. In fact 3/4ths of Black Americans who are unaffiliated with any particular faith say religion plays a somewhat important role in their lives. Over half report attending church service at least once a week, more than 75% report praying daily and almost all indicated that they are ABSOLUTELY certain that God exists.
Blacks express a high degree of comfort with religion’s role in politics and half feel there have been too few expressions of faith by politicians.
We are a minority with in a minority. I made the blog (blackatheists.wordpress.com) and then the Facebook page to get our voices heard, to help others who may feel that they’re alone. They’re not. We are here and we aren’t going anywhere. Seeing as I lost a cousin when she came out as an atheist. She resided in Georgia and was killed by her peers. The news articles and reports may have said it was because she was black, but I know better.
There has been a few mishaps with the Facebook page along the way, an admin was banned for 5 days due to an image he posted. I can’t remember exactly what the image was about and why it was banned by since then we have toned it down by an invisible standard based on what we feel is not going get us banned. I’m worried about the future of my page due to how easily it is for someone to report a page because there was something on that page that offended them and only them.
Black atheists have a hard time sharing their beliefs with family and friends because the struggle for civil rights was tied so close to Christianity. So blacks who reject god are accused of turning their backs on their history. Not believing in God is seen as a thing for white people. The idea that religious belief fueled the civil rights movement is not entirely true. It only true that churches were the only all-black refuge during Jim Crow. But the story that gets told is, Jesus delivered us. Frankly, it was humans who did all the work; against their will no less.