From Madalyn Murray O'Hair to Michael Newdow

Atheist Activism

-Atheist Activism-

Separation of Church and State
Non believers rights
Promoting education and understanding of Atheism
Fighting Religious intrusion and prejudice


Climate: the world today...

Europe: The European Union is arguing whether to mention God and more specifically, Christianity in it's constitution. The majority opinion seems to be towards a secular, godless document. Debate over religion’s place in England’s schools has become a major issue in light of a French government bill to ban Islamic headscarves and other religious insignia.

United States: Ten Commandment monuments and placards continue to be removed from public land. It seems many are being removed voluntarily without legal force although many lawsuits are still being waged.

Entertainment: There are two notable atheistic film projects. First, Heart of the Beholder, about protests and attempts to censor the film 'The Last Temptation of Christ. The other, Chapters and Verse, a small independent film involving Atheists, Christians and a gun.

The ABC television show 'Wife Swap' episode featuring the Infidel Guy has been "postponed". More...

ANN: Atheist News Network


Individuals: atheist warriors!

Godless Who's Who: A look at some of the major players among American nonbelievers.

Madalyn Murray O'Hair: Defiant martyr

She is probably the most controversial atheist in history and is refered to as "the most hated woman in America". She, along with her family defined and defended what it is to be an atheist in the US.

In 1959 The Murray Family sued and won it's case against Prayer and Bible recitation in public schools. The landmark case, Murray v. Curlett (School District v. Schempp) reemphasized the separation of church and state and helped secularize the public school system.


Madalyn Murray O'Hair to the US Supreme Court:"Your petitioners are Atheists, and they define their lifestyle as follows. An Atheist loves himself and his fellow man instead of a god. An Atheist accepts that heaven is something for which we should work now -- here on earth -- for all men together to enjoy. An Atheist accepts that he can get no help through prayer, but that he must find in himself the inner conviction and strength to meet life, to grapple with it, to subdue it and to enjoy it. An Atheist accepts that only in a knowledge of himself and a knowledge of his fellow man can he find the understanding that will help to a life of fulfillment."

In 1963 O'Hair founded American Atheists, the premier US atheist organization. Throughout Madalyn's years of activism she was a lightning rod that drew the "A word" into the national spotlight. This gave atheists a voice but also gave a face to the enemy of Christian America.

In September of 1995 Madalyn Murray O'Hair, her son Jon and granddaughter Robin mysteriously disappeared.

Many reported that she had emptied the American Atheists Bank account and left the country. The remains of Madalyn, Jon and Robin were found dumped at a remote ranch in Real County, 90 miles west of San Antonio. "Their bodies were burned and stacked haphazardly across each other after their legs had been cut off." - The New York Times (3/16/01)

Gary Peter Karr, an ex-con, was charged in a conspiracy to kidnap and extort money from the Murray O'Hairs, and was convicted on June 2, 2000 on four of the five counts.

Michael Newdow: Following in the footsteps

California atheist, Doctor and Lawyer who successfully sued over the words 'Under God' in the pledge of allegiance being recited in his daughters classroom. He won in the 9th circuit appeals court in a 2-1 decision. The US Supreme Court heard arguments in the case on and decided to overturn the lower courts decision on a technicality.

"When our laws recognize that atheists can be role models as positive and strong as Americans of any other life stance, we will further promote the diversity that has so benefited our society"
- Michael Newdow 'The Goal of the Pledge Suit'

also see: Newdow responds to a 'USA Today" editorial









Voices: speaking out



Tom Leykis: Nationally syndicated, 'Shock-Jock' radio talk show host and avid atheist. See the Multimedia and Downloads section for audio downloads.

list of stations

Infidel Guy and the Atheist Radio Network: Internet radio with an atheist edge. The underground voices of decent and free thought.

"First they came for the Jews and I did not speak out
because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for the Communists and I did not speak out
because I was not a Communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists and I did not speak out
because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for me and there was no one left
to speak out for me."

-Pastor Martin Niemöller


Organizations: fight, defend, educate!


American Atheists: The premier US Atheist organization founded in 1963 by activist Madalyn Murray O'Hair.

Americans United for the separation of church and state: Advocate for separation of church and state that works with lawmakers or through the legal process.

Freedom from Religion Foundation: An educational group that works for the separation of state and church and publisher of Freethought Today, the only freethought newspaper in North America.

American Civil Liberties Union: Defends the civil rights of citizens and has often defended atheists and fought religious intrusion into government.

Atheist Law Center: A new advocate for Atheist Civil Rights & absolute separation between religion and governments.

Secular Coalition of America: Raising money for a secular lobbyist in Washington


Paths to atheism

Every atheist has his own story about how he became an atheist. No atheist takes only one path; there are often many factors that take one to atheism. These factors are grouped into four distinct categories or "paths to atheism". An atheist may be the result of any combination and degree of the four paths.

Tell your story here

Discovery atheists

    This is the most common path taken to atheism. The individual discovers their lack of belief in a god or gods by way of examining the definition of and the beliefs surrounding the existence of a god or gods. The disbelief or lack of belief is found either by concluding that the god cannot exist or that there is no reason to believe that the god exists.

Reactionary atheists

    The individual finds that the beliefs of a particular religion does not fit them or has let them down and rebels against it by heading in the opposite direction towards non-belief.

Indoctrinated atheists

    This situation is where atheism is freely or forcibly taught to the individual. It is also possible for an individual to indoctrinate themself.

Natural (Unknown concept) atheists

    This is probably the least common path to atheism taken by adults. This is due to the aggressiveness and commonness of religion. When the concept of the existence of a deity is unknown, the individual is an atheist. A newborn baby is an atheist; the idea of a god is something that is taught or discovered.


Associated Philosophies

Free thought

Thought unrestrained by authority, tradition, or established belief, especially in matters of religion.


Ethical theory and practice that emphasizes human interests, values, and dignity by way of reason, scientific inquiry, and human fulfillment in the natural world and often rejects the importance of belief in God.


Preoccupation with or emphasis on material objects, comforts, and considerations, with a disinterest in or rejection of spiritual, intellectual, or cultural values.


A philosophy created by Ayn Rand that holds the validity of objective phenomena over subjective experience.


From Latin meaning belonging to reason. In philosophy, it’s a theory that holds that reason alone, unaided by experience, can arrive at basic truth regarding the world.


A skeptical attitude or doubt towards supernatural or unproven claims.


"'There are no atheists in foxholes' isn't an argument against atheism,
it's an argument against foxholes."
-- James Morrow