Friday, June 21, 2013

Margaret Doughty awarded citizenship after USCIS retracts request for proof of religious affiliation.

For those of you who may not remember, we covered the USCIS's bizarre request of Margaret 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.


  1. I am glad she is approved for citizenship. Although, I don't understand why she would want to move to the United States from Canada.

    1. Anonymous11:09 AM

      I don't either and I am saying that as a person with dual citizenship. You can better believe I am making retirement plans for Canada, we are currently working on my husbands citizenship. Since we do have 2 businesses in Canada it looks like he is going to get it quite easily.

    2. Anonymous11:13 AM

      And she may be retaining her Canadian citizenship.

  2. Anonymous10:21 AM

    LOL "sarah-palin-todd-palin-boob-grope-photo" (NY Mag headlines)

    Todd Palin Is Always There to Support Sarah Palin:

    1. Anonymous11:11 AM

      His hand isn't even close to cupping or caressing her. It's a set up photo op to give the impression they are close. Look at his fingers, they are locked in a straight position trying not to touch her. That is certainly NOT the way a loving husband holds the woman he loves.

  3. Anonymous11:12 AM

    Perfect example of separation of church and state. It is NONE of the governments business what religion anyone is and I hope this leads to the removal of all questions like this.

  4. Anonymous11:52 AM

    LMAO @that picture from nymag! Thanks for sharing, anon 10:21!


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