Atheist Problems

Ever since coming out atheist, I’ve noticed that people interact with me differently than they did before. And I interact with them differently.

As a result, I’ve found these extremely funny.

There’s one kind of atheist problem, like that posed by the most Reverend E.F. Briggs. (Because when E.F. Briggs talks, people tune out.) E.F. Briggs of the slogan: “Anti-God is Anti-American / Anti-American is Treason / Traitors lead to Civil War.” Apparently not believing in God is now a federal crime. Or at least sufficient cause for public lynching. On the other hand, who could ever feel truly threatened by a “lunatic atheist”? (A religious nut, that’s who.)

That’s not the kind of atheist problem I have in mind, though. I mean the kind that we normal atheists deal with everyday from our slightly-less-nutty religious culture.

I’ll tell you from the start, this is going to be deeply offensive. If you’re not an atheist, or you can’t take people making crude jokes referencing your beliefs, please go do something else now. Maybe go watch this year’s Christmas episode of Family Guy. Then you can come back here and these jokes will actually seem quite tame in comparison.

Or if you really want to know what it’s like to be an atheist…

(Note that a lot of these have been inspired—or unabashedly copied—from Twitter and elsewhere. In such cases, I’ve included links to the original sources. Sometimes, clicking on these links provides even more insight than my witty rendition.)

Atheist problems…

People looking at you funny because you don’t believe in a magic hyper-dimensional being who’s only there when you’re not actually looking at him. Especially after you’ve just been informed that he is now following you on Twitter. credit credit

Being threatened with hell, or even worse, being told you won’t get any presents from Santa this year because you were naughty. credit

Struggling over whether it’s okay to sing “O Holy Night” along with the radio. credit

That moment when everyone starts praying, and you’re already chewing a mouthful of food. credit

People who are deeply offended that you won’t stop posting verifiable facts on your own Facebook wall.

Making sense out of a random first cause, denouncing as immoral all moral denunciation, expressing meaningfully all meaninglessness, and finding security in hopelessness. And debunking inane, illogical, and ill-informed C.S. Lewis quotes. #Headdesk credit

Almost eating a baby, because you forgot both your Bible and your Koran and couldn’t remember whether babies were kosher or not. credit

Always having to figure out: What would Richard Dawkins do?

Dodging God’s lightning bolts.

This. #OyFingVey (How can so many earnest people be so ignorant?)

Repeatedly explaining the difference between stories and science.

The knowledge that you will be one of the first victims of the coming zombie apocalypse. (Because what do zombies eat?) credit

Always having to explain that you actually have other interests besides your unbelief in God. (And that this has always been true, even before you came out atheist.) credit

Explaining that you wear a cross bracelet because you think it looks cool, not because you’re a Christian. credit

Figuring out what to say instead of idioms like “God only knows…” or “Oh my God!”

The dirty looks after you sneeze and someone says, “Bless you,” and you reply, “No thanks.” credit

“You know I’m an atheist, right?” And wondering whether it was your fault that the conversation screeched to a halt.

Always having to explain that nothing bad happened to you to make you hate God, and that if you did actually hate God, you’d first have to believe he was real.

When someone announces, “A friend of mine just got saved!” and you have to suppress the urge to respond, “Oh, I’m so sorry…”

Sunday morning sex! And keeping the Viagra jokes to yourself on Easter weekend. credit

Smiling calmly (but not laughing) when religious people say they’re going to pray for your soul. But on the other hand…

Not being able to pray for good weather for your special outdoor party. credit

Not being able to solve exponential functions. (Because they rely on a higher power.) credit

Always being asked questions about the Bible, because everyone knows, you know more about it than anyone else in your social circle.

But then again, there’s the moment you meet someone who reveals, “I’m an atheist,” and you’re like, “Cool! I am, too.”

What other atheist problems?