May 2, 2015
Today our guest is Mandisa L. Thomas, the President of Black NonBelievers Inc. This is the first in a series of interviews I conducted at the American Atheist convention in Memphis, Easter weekend. I sat down with Mandisa as she was manning the Black Nonbelievers table at the Conference. The background noise is constant so put on your loud barroom conversation ears and you’ll hear every word.
As a description of the function Black Nonbelievers, she writes on the website, “Those of us that do not believe in God are all around you. We’re everyday people, just trying to live normal lives like everyone else. We’re your neighbors, students, employees, employers and entrepreneurs. A good many of us are also sitting next to you in religious institutions – either in doubt about their faith, or have given it up altogether. But because serious consequences could occur as a result of going public with their nonbelief – including being shunned by friends and family – they sit in silence and pretend to agree with something they no longer believe is true. And that’s where we come in. We exist not as an alternative, but as a primary support system. Whether you are fully out as a nonbeliever, still questioning your faith, or even if you have to pretend to go with the flow, but need a safe place to vent – we are here for you.”
This was an intense interview for me because of how ignorant I feel as a white, privileged male. I know you’re going to notice my inherent racism in this conversation. Mandisa was very graceful to my blind-spots and I absolutely loved talking to her. I think there’s a lot here for everyone. My talk with Mandisa is 44 minutes, followed by commentary with Bob for 27 minutes. --Cass Midgley
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Credits: "Towering Mountain of Ignorance" intro by Hank Green https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w3v3S82TuxU / Intro bumper "Never Know" by Jack Johnson / All other music by Cass Midgley
www.everyonesagnostic.com hosts: Cass Midgley & Dr. Bob Pondillo