The big Latino Atheists meeting with Juhem Navarro-Rivera (Twitter account) and his wife Yasmin happened this past weekend. There were quite a few people there: most of the usual crew, and a couple of new faces. He also has a site called The LatiNone (Twitter account here).
Another new face was Rachel, another non-Hispanic. She is interested in pushing atheist/skeptical activism forward here in Chicago, and has told me about groups I had not heard of.
One of the big topics of discussion is the religious demographics of Latinos in the USA. The big story is that a lot of Latinos are leaving the Roman Catholic Church and becoming evangelicals. But the other big story is that the number of non-affiliated Latinos is increasing just as quickly. JNR likes the term “Nones” to encompass atheists, agnostics, humanists and just about any other label that people who give themselves if they do not believe in any deity or religion. I think that is a good term, since atheism is not a religion.
He will probably post more about it. He wants us to use the ARIS survey and not the Pew survey of religious affiliation. He also mentioned that many media reports on Latino religious trends talk about the RCC to evangelical migration, but ignore the growth of Latino Nones. He said that the Nones are the third largest group of Latinos, after the RCC and evangelicals. There are more Latino Nones than all other non-RCC and non-evangelicals combined.
Jose, Martha, Rachel and Mr and Mrs NR talked about the Reason Rally. JNR and Jose talked about what direction the group should take: Should we incorporate, become part of a larger group (like CFI or Hispanic American Freethinkers). It looks like Hispanic American Freethinkers is a registered non-profit.
JNR talked about politics as well. The Republican Party has been trying to get Latinos into their party on the assumption that Latinos are culturally conservative. But the Tea Party/Talibaptist wing of the party (which is most of it) is driving them out.
JNR said he would like to see an atheist president, but it is not a big deal to him. We decided that Jaime will be our first atheist president, as well as the first Latino president. The next meeting might be out in Aurora at Jaime’s place. His wife will put us on the straight and narrow.
Jaime 2020. Make it happen.
Image from The LatiNone