Living in the USA I became aware that religion was being used for political ends. It was being wielded as a way to control the agenda of what people were allowed to say, think, teach or do, as defined by a fairly narrow group of right wing evangelical christian organizations.
America was setup as a place to be free, and it contains a huge number of cultures and religions, especially in the Bay Area. Taking away those freedoms in the name of one religion is more than objectionable, it directly affects my life and the lives of people around me. I have close friends and co-workers of just about every possible combination of ethnicity, origin, culture, religion, and sexual orientation.
There is a growing backlash from scientists, atheists and the more tolerant religions against the evangelical right. I began to see more people state openly that they are atheist, and start to mock the agenda of the evangelical right. In particular, creationism and intelligent design was singled out very effectively and lampooned by the Flying Spaghetti Monster religion. My first open act of atheism was to put an FSM logo on the back of my car.
Then Dawkins stirred things up with his book, "The God Delusion" and his public appearances in the US media. He distilled atheism down to a few powerful concepts, such as - The worlds religions describe thousands of gods. Most people believe in one, and don't believe in the rest. So it should be pretty easy to take the gods you don't believe in and add just one more to the list, leaving none.
Dawkins' example, as an outspoken and unapologetic atheist inspired me. I have become an activist atheist. I want to add one more atheist voice to say that I don't want religion in my life and I don't want other peoples religion to control the way I live my life. America should be free and open to a broad range of cultures and beliefs, including those of us who don't have an "imaginary friend". That's why I started writing this blog.