I have a rule in my personal life. I don’t bring up my atheism to anyone unless that person brings up religion first. If someone never mentions religion to me, they would never hear anything about atheism from me. They would not have their religious beliefs criticized by me if they just don’t bring it up. However, religious believers have a really hard time not talking about their imaginary deity and all the absurdly ridiculous other religious beliefs that go along with belief in God. They just can’t help themselves.
You will not see me standing out on street corners criticizing religion to passersby unprovoked. You won’t see me knocking on people’s doors spreading the awesome news that Hell is imaginary too. You won’t see me petitioning the government to change our national motto to, “In No God We Trust.” Nor would I petition the government to force atheism into our public schools, by forcing every child to admit that God doesn’t exist.
No, I’m not throwing my atheism in anyone’s face. I am however pushing back against religious people who throw their religion in everyone’s face. Don’t come to me and accuse me of throwing atheism in your face when it says, “In God We Trust” on our money. Don’t tell me about throwing atheism in your face when you plaster your religion all over the place and ring your church bells every hour on the hour.
The fact is that many religious believers are obnoxious with throwing their religion in everyone’s face. They do it so much they don’t even realize it any more. Do you know how annoying it is to hear religious believers thanking God after an atheist has helped them out? Or gushing over a baby and telling you (the atheist parent) what a blessing your baby is? Don’t get me wrong, some of these instances are well intentioned, but they are still throwing their religion in my face.
So when religious believers (Christians in particular) get upset about atheists “throwing” atheism in their face, they should really look around a little bit and notice that their religion is thrown in our face all the time. We are just responding to a conversation they started.