Many people do not stop to think about one group in this society that is maligned and discriminated against: atheists. But, we are. Here is one shocking example of it, when all they were doing was trying to help.
A group of South Carolina atheists were told that they were ‘not allowed’ to volunteer at the Spartanburg Soup Kitchen. Upstate Atheist president Eve Brannon told theSpartanburg Herald-Jounal:
I told [the Spartanburg Soup Kitchen] we wouldn’t wear our T-shirts. We wouldn’t tell anyone who we are with. We just want to help out.
Lou Landrum, who is the executive director of the soup kitchen, branded the atheists a “disservice to the community” and said that they could set up shop across the street. She said:
They can set up across the street from the Soup Kitchen. They can have the devil there with them, but they better not come across the street.
Hmmm, last I checked, their god was supposed to be about love. That doesn’t sound very loving to me, Ms. Landrum. The director went on to say that they would not take anything, even money, from atheists for their soup kitchen, She said:
We stand on the principles of God. Do [atheists] think that our guests are so ignorant that they don’t know what an atheist is? Why are they targeting us? They don’t give any money. I wouldn’t want their money.
I’d personally be willing to bet that if someone is so hungry that they are eating in a soup kitchen that they would be willing to take the help or money of anyone, atheist or otherwise. Others seem to agree, as, according to Eve Brannon, the Upstate Atheists have helped plenty of Christian groups without incident. Brannon says:
We’ve raised money for March of Dimes, worked with the Generous Garden Project, done community park clean ups, adopted a highway, and sponsored local foster children for Christmas.
They are the only group that denied us the opportunity to volunteer.
In other words, what Lou Landrum and what the Spartanburg Soup Kitchen are doing is just shameful.
Author: Shannon Barber
About the Author / Shannon Barber
Shannon Barber is a self- described queer feminist and activist for LGBT rights, women’s rights, and secular rights in America. She is a lifelong lover of words, though her educational background is in computer science. She currently writes for 3 liberal websites, and keeps her own humor blog for lesbians. She hopes to change the world, one mind at a time.