August 28, 2009

Campus Freethinkers

Posted in Uncategorized at 9:50 pm by fuckyourfavoritedreams

I am now officially a Washington University in St. Louis student! Well, I have been before (during high-school), but I am now living on campus full-time and classes started this week. That is why my blog has been silent for the last 2 weeks. It is a beautiful campus with far more people at my level than my hometown. It has amazing architecture, a wide variety of classes with some of the best professors in the world, and a disproportionate amount of christian group presence to atheist presence.

That last part is really the only thing about WashU that bothers me. I couldn’t find an atheist organization on campus, so I emailed the Student Union and asked about it. Here is their reply:

Hello,
There is no officially registered club. However you can try to contact a club that was started last year *********@gmail.com
good luck.

This news was deeply disheartening. An undergrad school with 6,000 of the nation’s brightest that barely acknowledges the existence of its secular humanist/freethinking population? I couldn’t believe it. So I emailed the address and got an immediate response back. Apparently, there are about 70 people in the group’s Facebook group. They call themselves the WashU League of Freethinkers (WULF). Since they are not officially registered, that means that it’s going to be infinitely more difficult to acquire funding to do anything. Their logo has Epicurus in it, which is awesome.

Despite my tiresome schedule, I will be doing all that I can to support WULF. For starters, encouraging them to get active and get registered will be important. There are advertisements for christian organizations in several places on campus, and I hope that WULF can start to compete this year.

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1 Comment »

  1. Campus freethought groups are getting better… In 1997 I started the Freethinkers at Virginia Tech http://www.freeatvt.org/ and it has been an up-and-down experience. It takes a lot of social capital and infrastructure to keep college groups going. The independent streak that is present in so many freethinkers is difficult to channel and direct into social action. I’ve met some students who believe that “freethought group” is an inherently internally contradictory and laughably impossible structure. I think the efforts of avoiding doctrinaire attitudes (basically avoid infighting) and attempting to forge lasting social structures (mailing lists for current and former student leaders to share information and insights) on college campuses are worthwhile.


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