Ask Rob 9 – “O Romeo, Romeo! Wherefore art thou Romeo? Deny thy father and refuse thy name.”

By Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Rob Boston is the Senior Adviser and Editor for Church and State of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, which is the monthly membership magazine. He began work at Americans United in 1987 and authored four books entitled Close Encounters with the Religious Right: Journeys into the Twilight Zone of Religion and Politics (Prometheus Books, 2000), The Most Dangerous Man in America? Pat Robertson and the Rise of the Christian Coalition (Prometheus Books, 1996), Why the Religious Right Is Wrong About Separation of Church and State (Prometheus Books, 1993; second edition, 2003), and Taking Liberties: Why Religious Freedom Doesn’t Give You The Right To Tell Other People What To Do (Prometheus Books, 2014). Mr. Boston can be contacted here: boston@au.org.

Here we talk about the voices needing more coverage.

Scott Douglas Jacobsen: If you like at the submissions and the editorial positions with the secular and freethought communities’ publications, what voices and educational backgrounds seem the least represented and, proportionate to the rest of the demographics and educational attainments of the secular and freethought community, require more coverage and support to bringing more colours into the non-religious rainbow?

Rob Boston: The typical demographic profile for many humanist groups in the U.S. is older, white and male – oftentimes someone with a college education or advanced degrees. Folks who fit that profile have led and built humanism for many years, and I’m grateful for that.

But for humanism to grow in America, it needs to become more diverse. Our nation is becoming increasingly diverse, and that trend will continue. Thus, we need to hear the voices of people of colour, women and younger activists.

I’m also interested in hearing more from members of the LGBTQ+ community since conservative forms of religion have been used to suppress LGBTQ rights for centuries. Finally, I think we need to dispel the idea that humanism is only for people who have college degrees or a large amount of formal education.

Humanism is for everyone and must be accessible to everyone. As someone who comes from a working-class background, I’m well aware of what humanism has to offer members of this community. I want to hear their voices and learn from them.

Jacobsen: Thank you for the opportunity and your time, Rob.

Scott Douglas Jacobsen is the Founder of In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal and In-Sight Publishing. He authored/co-authored some e-booksfree or low-cost. If you want to contact Scott: Scott.D.Jacobsen@Gmail.com.

Canadian Atheist Associates: Godless Mom, Nice Mangoes, Sandwalk, Brainstorm Podcast, Left at the Valley, Life, the Universe & Everything Else, The Reality Check, Bad Science Watch, British Columbia Humanist Association, Dying With Dignity Canada, Canadian Secular AllianceCentre for Inquiry CanadaKelowna Atheists, Skeptics, and Humanists Association.

Other National/Local Resources: Association humaniste du QuébecAtheist FreethinkersCentral Ontario Humanist AssociationComox Valley HumanistsGrey Bruce HumanistsHalton-Peel Humanist CommunityHamilton HumanistsHumanist Association of LondonHumanist Association of OttawaHumanist Association of TorontoHumanists, Atheists and Agnostics of ManitobaOntario Humanist SocietySecular Connextions SeculaireSecular Humanists in CalgarySociety of Free Thinkers (Kitchener-Waterloo/Cambridge/Guelph)Thunder Bay HumanistsToronto OasisVictoria Secular Humanist Association.

Other International/Outside Canada Resources: Allianz vun Humanisten, Atheisten an AgnostikerAmerican Atheists,American Humanist AssociationAssociação Brasileira de Ateus e AgnósticoséééBrazilian Association of Atheists and AgnosticsAtheist Alliance InternationalAtheist Alliance of AmericaAtheist CentreAtheist Foundation of AustraliaThe Brights MovementCenter for Inquiry (including Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science), Atheist IrelandCamp Quest, Inc.Council for Secular HumanismDe Vrije GedachteEuropean Humanist FederationFederation of Indian Rationalist AssociationsFoundation Beyond BeliefFreedom From Religion FoundationHumanist Association of IrelandHumanist InternationalHumanist Association of GermanyHumanist Association of IrelandHumanist Society of ScotlandHumanists UKHumanisterna/Humanists SwedenInternet InfidelsInternational League of Non-Religious and AtheistsJames Randi Educational FoundationLeague of Militant AtheistsMilitary Association of Atheists and FreethinkersNational Secular SocietyRationalist InternationalRecovering From ReligionReligion News ServiceSecular Coalition for AmericaSecular Student AllianceThe Clergy ProjectThe Rational Response SquadThe Satanic TempleThe Sunday AssemblyUnited Coalition of ReasonUnion of Rationalist Atheists and Agnostics.

Image Credit: Americans United for Separation of Church and State/Rob Boston.

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