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Ask An Atheist: Why aren’t Atheists included in memorial services?


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By Jim Downard

Why aren’t Atheists included in significant memorial services like 9/11 memorials or veterans day?

I can’t claim to know whether every Memorial Day or Veterans Day observance excludes non-believers from the official observance when religious invocations are done, but it is fair to say we aren’t taken note of generally.  And the reason for this would appear fairly obvious.  The political organizers of such things might prefer we don’t exist, and the last I heard the VFW Auxiliary explicitly excludes atheists.

There is an overall out of sight, our of mind, element here.  How often are issues addressed where religious contributions are considered a default to discuss, and non-believers not even invited to the table?

Jim Downard

About Jim Downard

Jim Downard is a Spokane native (with a sojourn in Southern California back in the early 1960s) who was raised in a secular family, so says had no personal faith to lose.

He's always been a history and science buff (getting a bachelor's in the former area at what was then Eastern Washington University in the early 1970s).

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