Camp Sunshine

One of the things we’re doing with Atheists of Maine is a fundraiser and subsequent polar dip for Camp Sunshine. Hemant Mehta of Friendly Atheist wrote about us:

The Atheists of Maine are trying to raise money for a truly worthy cause: Camp Sunshine, “a retreat for children with life-threatening illnesses and their families.”

Right now, the atheists are the top fundraising group for the cause, but there’s a long way to go for the camp to raise the $30,000 it needs. So if you have the ability to help out, please donate to group members Ryan Dalessandro or Michael Hawkins.

There are other group members, but I think it’s clear that anyone who wants to donate should donate to my page specifically. Why? Because this is my blog, that’s why.

We’re ultimately hoping to find a church group to compete with us for position of top donor, so if any Maine-based group is interested, let us know.

Damon Fowler interview

Hemant Mehta has conducted an interview with Damon Fowler. It can be found here, and it’s an interesting read, but the best part? Damon now has a $16,000+ scholarship for college.

Damon Fowler

Damon Fowler is a graduating senior in Louisiana. He is also an atheist and he didn’t like his school’s plan to include prayer at the graduation ceremonies. He contacted administrators and let them know their plan was illegal and he would involve the ACLU if necessary. Surprisingly, the school backed down right away. However, unsurprisingly, it still allowed prayer to go on during certain school-sponsored ceremonies anyway.

Damon has now become an outcast at his school, even receiving wildly inappropriate criticism from teachers. (One teacher, Mitzi Quinn, said Damon had contributed nothing to his classmates.) This isn’t that shocking coming from the South.

But there is good news. Various pro-First Amendment and atheist sites have picked up the story. One result has been a $1,000 college scholarship from The Freedom From Religion Foundation for Damon. At another site, Friendly Atheist by Hemant Mehta, even more money has been donated:

I’ve been gone most of the day, but when I looked tonight, I saw you that 244 of you had chipped in over $5,500…

I’m amazed at how much support you’re all giving him. I’m so proud to be part of this community.

I’m glad to see yet another atheist fighting for basic principles (ones to which so many Christians pay lip service and nothing more), while also being given the gift of a substantially reduced college bill. Now if only those in charge of Damon’s school could become half as educated as he already is, then no one would have to make blog posts like this.