The Groupmind Cult of New Atheism

My Facebook post for today:

Hypocrite alert:
People who are “offended” by speaking ill of the dead (infamous misogynist Scalia and drug cartel creating Nancy Reagan), yet will overlook and/or endorse body shaming, rape and death threats. New Atheist “dudebros” are their own brand of SJW stupidity. Always, always avoid the groupmind, my grasshoppers. The groupmind is where you find those dangerously volatile extremes And when you see a seemingly innocuous label become a group, that’s when you exit. As my great grandfather always said, “You are who you associate yourself with.”
And I’d like to thank my parents for raising me to have my own moral compass – teaching me the importance of volunteering, taking on a cause, and speaking up when you witness a wrong.

The groupmind is a very dangerous thing. Also, referred to as group-think, the groupmind is the cult herd mentality that happens when a group, a collective, becomes more important than individualism. In fact, so much more important that when a few dissent, the response is a lynch mob of sorts – be it verbal and psychological, or very physical in the more barbaric societies. Both the individual and the collective of humanity is important. One is the wave, one is the ocean.

Fringe groups ruin everything. And the fringe group that ruined Twitter for me is New Atheism. I’ve had my same Twitter since 2008. I found my best friend on Twitter, and I had many various people interacted with – not just new atheists. Cat Fancy magazine followed me on Twitter, as did my favorite international yoga instructor. However, when I found myself in a certain atheist circle after Dan Simpson* of Atheism Chat found me via my Twitter question inquiring as to why there were so few outspoken female atheists, I noticed more and more unusual, even creepy, accounts following me. These accounts were friends of people I spoke with on a semi-regular basis. These creepies were argumentative to the point of obsessive narcissism and most were exceedingly uneducated.

The term “atheist” is a negation. As I’ve lectured again and again, “a” is a prefix that simply means “without” or “lacking” god/religion. This is all atheists have in common – a lack of belief in a godhead. Unlike creepy, chauvinistic new atheists, I don’t put a political or manipulative spin on my words. I shouldn’t have to defend the question I contributed to Atheism Chat (Why is there a lack of public female atheists?) when some coward alias account claims it’s a “gender studies” question. In fact, anytime anything remotely pertaining to women is mentioned, some pathetic numbnuts dropped non sequiturs like rabbits do turds. So many dudebro idiots don’t understand the difference between women’s studies and gender studies. From twenty-something year-olds pimping out life advice, to alias coward accounts demanding “evidence” for personal opinions, most of these social rejects would flunk my developmental English class hard.

All the negative behavior I’ve witnessed committed by new atheists on Twitter is the exact same I’ve encountered from religious circles. In rejecting what they hate, they’ve managed to become it. When one has made a life on being an acolyte of a new atheist demagogue, anyone who disagrees or argues with his prophet is fodder for the henchmen of new atheism. This fringe group has its own “middle management” just like every other herd. The weird pecking order of a cult and demand that all must agree, is an example of groupmind. I’ve seen the groupmind take over in more than one philosophies.

I noticed new atheists felt they had a right to be ugly and react violently when I used the term “animistic atheist” and embraced all the other attributes and terms that apply to me:  feminist, humanist, spiritual, witch, etc. I shouldn’t have felt the pressure to remove “animistic atheist” from my Twitter description because of these new atheist creeps. I saw a social media outlet I loved and enjoyed ruined by an extreme, a group with religious fervor that claims not to be a religion, yet their religious zeal to their prophet outweighs that of a moderate Christian. When you take a simple term and put your own zealous spin and cult mentality on it, then it becomes a belief system/dogma – you’ve got a religion. And like religions, new atheism is ripe with misogyny.

In its various denominations and petty infighting, atheism is a religion. Stating that anyone who differs from the cult mentality of new atheism is the opposite extreme (Atheism Plus), is a zealot – a new atheist zealot. Northern Ireland much? The minute I learned of the rape and death threats, along with body shaming, leveled at Maryam Namazie, I condemned this behavior both publicly and privately to my associates who podcast. I called on us being the ones to condemn threats, and hold the bar high on behavior and decorum. I thought my Twitter buddies would agree, but they lashed out and/or ignored my message.

Either I was wrong about atheism, or it was hijacked around the time I felt comfortable embracing the term. Previously, I thought “new atheism” just meant one was comfortable embracing the lack of a religion, a groupmind, a specific godhead. To me, being a new atheist meant being public and unashamed of one’s lack of religion – being completely out of the closet and politically aware. But it does not mean any such thing. New atheism is a cult mentality that is so hijacked on its own hatred of the regressive left that it doesn’t see how it has become regressive. They are the psychological ISIS when they condone rape and death threats by their henchmen and demagogues. There is very little that is more misogynistic than condoning/ignoring rape and death treats, and calling someone crazy when they speak out against such behavior; also, personalizing “crazy” because of their genitalia.

I see the same con artistry that I do in new atheism as in any religion/cult. It seems to be a perversion of humanity to sector off into cults, harboring an irrational and feverish hatred for all those who disagree and differ from you. Atheism is a religion because of its fringe groups. Either I just didn’t know it, or it’s an occurrence of the last year, atheism is now a religion of non-belief, and atheists have made it this way. Everything they abhorred about radical religious people, they have become – dogmatic, vitriolic, angry, regressive, bullying, and dependent on group approval.

*Dan Simpson, curator of Atheism Chat, is NOT a new atheist. Dan is one of the only consistent guys I’ve met who embrace the term atheist. He’s writes a fabulous blog on atheism, and tackled the “new atheist” problem:  The Bigotry of “New Atheism”