Monthly Archives: April 2012
With any doubt at all, CNCAH stands firmly for the freedom and rights of all people. No group, regardless of size, has the right to deny the rights or privileges of another group, or even just a single person. Thus, we have naturally embraced marriage equality, and the right of people to enjoy the same standards of living as any other.
To further that goal, we are throwing a fundraiser to help generate funds to fight the good fight, and to protect the freedom that all Americans deserve. Thus, we have joined forces with the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Fayetteville, alongside The Alliance of the Fayetteville-Sandhills Region (a local straight/LGBT coalition dedicated to fighting for equal rights) to bring a one night only dramatic reading of the play “8″ by Dustin Lance Black.
Review from the website “8″ The Play:
Uncover the truth about marriage for gay and lesbian Americans. “8″—a new play by Academy-award winning screenwriter Dustin Lance Black (Milk, J. Edgar)—demystifies the debate around marriage equality by chronicling the landmark trial of Perry v. Schwarzenegger. Learn about the historical context of marriage from expert testimony. See the human cost of discrimination. Uncover the arguments used to justify bans on marriage for gay and lesbian couples. Using the actual court transcripts from the landmark federal trial of California’s Prop. 8 and first-hand interviews, “8″ shows both sides of the debate in a moving 90-minute play.
Join us Thursday, May 3rd at 5pm (Doors at 5, reading at 5:30) at the Cameo Art House Theater in downtown Fayetteville as we tap the local theater talent including members of the very popular improv troupe, the Horrible Folks to present the dramatic reading for your enjoyment. The best part is that the event is FREE! However, we will be asking for donations to aid in the struggle to obtain marriage equality for all.
Even if you’re not able to attend, you can still lend your support to freedom and rights for all Americans by visiting our website and clicking on the DONATE button. All donations received on our website until the vote on May 8th will be contributed to funding the fight for marriage equality.
Feel free to visit the website of our friends and allies in this effort to learn more about the people right here in your community committed to freedom and equal rights for all.
As many people know, this weekend promises to be quite exciting in the Fayetteville area as the 30th annual extravaganza known as the Dogwood Festival swings around for another year. CNCAH is proud to be hosting a booth representing our group this year at the event. To our knowledge, this marks the very first time that an openly secular booth will be in attendance. We are very excited about the opportunity to raise awareness of our goals and values. There are plenty of people that simply are not satisfied with old methods and philosophies, and seek a new approach in life that is based on reason and science. That is exactly what we stand for, and we’re here to let them know they are not alone.
Drop on by the booth and say hello, hang out for a little bit, learn what we’re about and what we’re up to. If you’re lucky, you may even get your hands on some of our awesome schwag.
Hope to see you there!
When I was walking toward the parking lot on Saturday, a young lady walked toward me carrying a sign that read “This is what an Atheist looks like.” As she began to cross the street a security guard stopped her and made her throw the sign away. I asked him why and he said that no picketing is allowed on post. That situation demonstrated the atmosphere leading up to Rock Beyond Belief (RBB). It seemed many people were concerned there would be trouble. But that is to be expected when a social precedence is set. And while RBB doesn’t rank up there with Rosa Parks’ famous bus ride or Harvey Milk’s successful run for office, it indeed set precedence. RBB, like the Reason Rally a week earlier, demonstrated that normal people with normal families live normal lives without religion. Unlike any other secular event, though, RBB also showed the world that America’s military is full of non-believers. And it did so without incidence. No riots, no mob violence. I am sorry if that disappointed some. But, as anyone involved with the secular movement could tell you, a firm but friendly stand is what you can expect from rational people fighting for acceptance. Because of events like RBB, we no longer need to carry a sign that says “This is what an Atheist looks like.” People already know.
What members of our group may not know, though, is that we trace the history of our current organization to the roots of this event. When the Billy Graham Evangelical Association held “Rock the Fort” on Fort Bragg in 2010, an event advertised to convert Soldiers to Christianity, the secular community on Fort Bragg and in the surrounding Fayetteville area were outraged. “Rock the Fort” became the proverbial straw that caused secular people in the community to say enough is enough. And they sought an organization around which to rally. With the momentum gained from this outpouring of interest, a cadre of members from the Cape Fear Atheists and Agnostics (CFAA) decided to take their local Meet-Up group to the next level. Led by Geri Weaver, a seasoned veteran in the cause for secular rights, the group decided that the best way to counter religious pressure was not by plotting an anti-religious counter attack, but by showing the friendly face of rational thinkers. Geri set up a meeting between CFAA members and Mike Werner, a former president of the American Humanist Association (AHA). CFAA members weren’t long into Mike’s presentation before realizing that Humanism was the core principle around which we wanted to build a new organization. And thus was born a new chapter of AHA, the Central North Carolina Atheists and Humanists or CNCAH (pronounced “Seen-Ka”), Fayetteville’s first non-profit organization for freethinkers.
Since our founding on 12 February 2011, we more than double in size while tackling fun, new, and challenging projects. The first was a double hitter with the After Rapture Party and Greydon Square Concert. Afterwards, we added a regular line-up of events to include our monthly Critical Drinking, Happy Humanist Hour, and family oriented science programs; all the while participation in various festivals, scholarly debates, and secular celebrations. Recently, we joined forces with other secular groups in North and South Carolina to create a speakers tour to bring acclaimed personalities to these states at a fraction of the cost of independent efforts. And now with RBB, we add our first Humanist vendor booth to CNCAH’s repertoire of activities. Thanks to the members who manned the table throughout the day, booth sales exceeded our expectations. Also, even though we were not allowed to solicit membership on post during the event, the publicity we received from our booth resulted in a surge of new members.
So what’s next? Well, there’s no time to rest. On Easter Sunday, we are going to show Fayetteville that community service is a better alternative to worship service with our first Adopt-a-Highway clean-up event. A year in the making, CNCAH is finally and proudly responsible for 2 miles of Ramsey Street starting directly across from the Methodist University Golf Course. (Coincidence I assure you.)
So come out this Sunday, meet our new members, and let’s show the community who we are!