Atheists Added to Madison’s Non-Discrimination Ordinance

Madison, Wisconsin recently added atheists to its non-discrimination ordinance. Here’s a quote from the AP article:

Todd Stiefel, the president of Openly Secular, which helps non-religious people become open about their absence of faith […] said people who tell their employers or family members that they are not religious face rejection and harassment. He said he’s heard from atheists who were fired the day after sharing their non-religious views with their employers or disinherited by their parents after opening up about their lack of faith. “It boils down to the misinformation and prejudice that gets passed down generation to generation. People have been raised being told that atheists are evil and they eat babies and they can’t be trusted.”

The AP article played this news story like it was: (a) unnecessary; (b) some sort of freak show idea coming out of a liberal city; and (c) a political hot potato that almost no other city would dare touch–but I’d like to see ordinances protecting atheists go viral. It’s time. As people in increasing numbers define themselves in secular terms privately, more and more of them will also want to come out of the closet about it, and such ordinances would nip in the bud public discrimination.

So I say yes. What say you?

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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