For Immediate Release
Contact: Paul Fidalgo
Phone: (207) 358-9785
February 24, 2015
The Center for Inquiry (CFI) today demanded that it be included on the American Family Association’s list of so-called “anti-Christian” groups in the United States, citing CFI’s work for the equality of the nonreligious, its fight against religion’s interference in health care and women’s reproductive rights, and its support of same-sex marriage.
The AFA’s list and map seeks to highlight those groups it believes “openly display bigotry toward the Christian faith,” by opposing things like school prayer and legally protected religious discrimination, and supporting the rights of LGBT Americans to marry and adopt. CFI opposes the AFA on all of these issues and countless others.
“Of course, the Center for Inquiry is by no means anti-Christian, and we work to combat bigotry of all kinds, be it against atheists, Christians, or any other group,” said CFI communications director Paul Fidalgo, nervously, between gulps of overly sweetened coffee. “But come on. The AFA listed Americans United for Separation of Church and State, American Atheists, and, get this, the AARP! The AARP!”
“Come on!” added Fidalgo, who looked like he needed more sleep. “We ask…no, we demand that the American Family Association recognize that we are just as much a threat to their backward vision of a theocratic, Christianized America as any of these groups – certainly more than the AARP – and add us to their list.”
CFI outlined several reasons for their inclusion on the AFA list, including:
- Having won a battle in federal court to allow nonreligious Secular Celebrants to solemnize marriages in Indiana
- Having rallied support for secular and atheistic invocations at public meetings, such as in Greece, NY, the focus of the recent Supreme Court case
- Fighting against the ability of religious employers to discriminate in hiring or impose their religious beliefs on women employees’ health care decisions
- Opposing school voucher schemes that would send taxpayer dollars to religious schools
“Granted, we have vigorously fought for the religious freedom of Christians in parts of the world where they have themselves faced persecution, such as Meriam Ibrahim in Sudan,” conceded Fidalgo, “but I’m hoping the AFA can look past that, and put us on their enemies list, where we belong.”
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The Center for Inquiry (CFI) is a nonprofit educational, advocacy, and research organization headquartered in Amherst, New York, with executive offices in Washington, D.C. It is also home to both the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry and the Council for Secular Humanism. The mission of CFI is to foster a secular society based on science, reason, freedom of inquiry, and humanist values. CFI‘s web address is www.centerforinquiry.net.