Naturalistic Neurodiversity

Exploring our differences through science.

Ableism in Atheism Anonymous #16

with 7 comments

Do you consider yourself to be a person with a disability?


Have you (or do you personally know someone who has) felt out-of-place or limited your involvement with an atheist community because of disability-related situations?


What steps could atheist communities take to become more inclusive?

Your examples are EXclusive. How about, on a case by case basis, find out who will be there and arrange to have their needs met, without a blanket exclusionary policy? And recognize that some people’s needs just won’t be met under certain circumstances. My house has ramps, and I go out of my way to make people comfortable, but if your iron lung doesn’t fit through my door, sorry, that’s just too bad.

Any other thoughts about ableism and atheism?

Please don’t restrict language. That’s a really bad road to go down. Nobody should expect freedom from being offended.

The above is response #16 from the Ableism in Atheism survey.

So let me get this straight: you are worried about “exclusionary” policy intended to include more people? Do you even know what an iron lung is? (And that only 30 people in the entire nation even use one?) Or are you just fretting about having to step outside of your able-bodied privilege for 5 seconds and realize that perhaps there’s a world of diverse experience that you’ve never even considered?

Also, while I respect your freedom to use whichever words you like, you likewise get to respect my freedom to kick you out of my group if you use a slur against any of the other members. Don’t like that? You also have the freedom to start a group for people who enjoy calling other people names.


Written by The Nerd

May 1, 2012 at 12:00 pm

7 Responses

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  1. The “corrections” tacked onto some people’s surveys make other people less likely take the survey.


    May 1, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    • That’s fine. I’ve collected a good many excellent responses before I began posting these anonymous responses. I only decided to leave the survey open because some people may find it as a good way to get things of their chests. But for the purposes of my non-scientific study, only the responses submitted before I began posting these online “count”.

      The Nerd

      May 1, 2012 at 4:54 pm

      • didja get mine? I had no idea so few ppl still used iron lungs!

        Rogi Riverstone

        May 1, 2012 at 8:23 pm

      • crap. I don’t count. How could I respond until u started posting these? We’re not joined at the hip…well, kinda….I’ve only known u….um…not a very long time. DId u find me b/c of the GenderQueer Atheist video I made on YouTube or did u find me thru the search on FaceBook, which stinks. I can never find anybody that way. Bing bites. I go to icky google; at least it sort of works…as a search engine…AND a data mining tool. this is a tangent, huh?

        Rogi Riverstone

        May 1, 2012 at 8:26 pm

        • I found you when you posted on JT Eberhard’s wall one time a while back. You had just made the group.
          Anyway, I posted a link to the survey in the group twice.

          The Nerd

          May 1, 2012 at 9:17 pm

        • Oh, and the reason I had to cut them off is otherwise I won’t be able to sit down and analyze a chunk for the presentation I’m giving on the topic. If I kept letting new responses flow in as I’m looking at the older ones, I’d never be able to present a “finished” talk at the local SkeptiCamp!

          The Nerd

          May 1, 2012 at 9:19 pm

        • Not that I’m not getting new responses for this blog. Just not for my presentation
          Ok, I’m probably just confusing everyone now. I’ll bugger off.

          The Nerd

          May 1, 2012 at 9:22 pm

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