early this month.
Courtesy of Divided Under God:
Ms. Doughty’s case was brought to the attention of the Freedom From Religion Foundation, who wrote a letter to the USCIS on her behalf, as well as the American Humanist Association, who did the same. Ms. Doughty’s local Congressman, Blake Farenthold, also got involved, helping to get her case escalated to the highest levels of the USCIS for review.
Today, she received an email from the congressional office with the following message from the USCIS included:
“This Service hereby withdraws the request for evidence (RFE) issued on June 7, 2013. This Service accepts your detailed statement in satisfaction of the information requested by the RFE. Your application for naturalization has been approved.”
Margaret Doughty’s case can be seen as a victory for the non-religious in the U.S., many times referred to as the “nones” (based on religious affiliation questionnaire categories). Often called the fastest growing demographic in the country, those not affiliated with a religion are said to make up about 20% of the population. Atheists fall into this category, are widely misunderstood, and just as in this case, often discriminated against by the religious majority. Recent polls have shown atheists to be the least trusted group in America.
This is a huge victory for those of us who self identify as Atheists, and really everybody in this country if you think about it.
The idea that just because you do not find anything reasonable about suspending your disbelief to embrace one religious faith or another it makes you a less trustworthy person is completely bizarre to me.
Of course I see it as quite the opposite, but recognize that I remain in the minority.
While we are on the topic I thought I would share with you Richard Dawkin's observations about Atheism and the people who embrace it.
We still have a long way to go, but I see the movement for the acceptance of Atheists in this country to be ultimately as important as the acceptance of the homosexual community.