Colin Walker's Story

The following is my tale and struggle with coming out godless and seeing the world for what it really is; a vast and wonder filled place. Enjoy.

This is a true story that everyone should hear (or in this case read). When I was a young boy I like many of the other children I grew up with, believed in God and the concept of Heaven. I did not know why, maybe it was childhood conformity or peer pressure, but whatever it was, I could not clearly define why I believed in what I believed in. I was a member of the Boy Scouts of America (a heavily Christian organization). I would pray and attend church with my friends and fellow Scout members. Then one day, I began to think about it all. I began to wonder why I believed in what others believed in. I began to think that maybe, just maybe there was more to life than worshiping an invisible super-being and his Hercules-like son (half man half god). I had been raised by my parents to believe whatever I felt like believing in. Never in my childhood did my parents tell me their beliefs to either myself or my siblings. I came to my decision early in life and on my own. Soon I began to stop praying in Scout meetings and events. I stopped attending church functions. While the term atheist was not in the my vocabulary, the idea was one I readily adopted. I began to read about the Big Bang, evolution, science, technology, philosophy. I even read the Bible for good measure and in order to have a well constructed and thought out argument. As word of this my choice in lifestyle spread, my fellow Scouts began to taunt and assault me all in the name of their God. They would humiliate and verbally and sometimes physically torture me. I felt and actually was ostracized for my belief in the nonexistence of God or gods. At school I was bullied by children who claimed to be good Christians. The worst event at school happened one day when I was walking home from school with my sister. I was attacked from behind and beaten in the head with an empty Coke can. The boys beating me up knocked me to the ground and kicked me saying that I was going to burn in Hell for not believing in God or accepting Jesus Christ in my heart. As time went on I contemplated suicide and even attempted to hang myself because I was feeling alone and scared from all the persecuting (among other things) for not believing in God. Now, before you decided to shrug this story off and just give it the proverbial finger, I want you the reader to consider the following. Christians in the US make up 75% of the religious population. Atheists make up 5%. Th3 most common fear among parents is that their child will marry and atheist. There are so few atheists in the United States, that we are not only mistrusted, hated, rejected, and feared, but we are statistically placed among child molesters due to our small numbers. People of faith assume that we are without morals. This is untrue, we live our lives by the golden rule (in Hammurabi's words: "An eye for an eye."); Do unto others as you would have others undo to you. We look at humanity as precious, miraculous, and rare. We do not kill, steal, or harm others like many believe. We live in fear. We cannot come out and say who we are or what we believe without being yelled at, taunted, or harassed. We only want to be. We do not try to convert others, we merely ask that others, like us take time to read and open their minds. In a country where even the Christian President is against intellectuals, we are a frightened breed, waiting for the day the Christian Right comes to our doors to give us a number, give away our property, and to put us in camps. We cannot have a tax-exempt church like any other belief has simply because we choose not to belief in what others believe. I write this not in anger or fear, but in sadness. We are a small lot and are trying to get by in a world that would sooner shut us up than hear our beliefs. We listen to other's ridiculous beliefs, why can't the others just patiently listen to ours? Thank you for reading this. I hope it has opened the eyes of those who would choose not to look and feel for others. Thank you.

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