Ban Lifted: American Atheists to Speak, Table at 2015 CPAC

Washington, DC—On Thursday, American Atheists announced that board member Jamila Bey will be speaking on the main stage at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), after the atheist civil-rights nonprofit was banned from tabling at the 2014 conference. American Atheists will also co-host an exhibitor table at this year’s event.

Jamila Bey, American Atheists board member, spoke at CPAC today.

Jamila Bey, American Atheists board member, spoke at CPAC today.

“Our message is simple: Atheists matter,” said American Atheists President David Silverman. “We’re returning to CPAC to make it clear that conservative does not equal Christian. The core principles many conservatives value—fiscal responsibility, individual freedoms, small government, low taxes, a free market—have nothing to do with the issues crusaded for by the religious right. Conservative lawmakers push away millions of atheist voters who want a responsible, small government and a free market, but can’t and won’t support religiously motivated laws that make our government bigger and more personally invasive.”

Bey, who is a journalist from the D.C. area, will speak on Thursday, February 26. Her speech will be the first by a known atheist speaking about atheist issues in CPAC history. Similarly, American Atheists’ booth presence will be the first organized presence of an atheist group promoting atheist awareness at the conference.

In 2014, American Atheists applied and was accepted for booth space at the largest annual conservative convention in the country. The organization paid the $3,000 booth fee, made travel and lodging arrangements, had materials printed, and even had a successful pre-conference meeting with Bey and CPAC organizers to discuss how conservative politicians could better find common ground with atheist voters.

American Atheists then distributed a press release announcing that it would exhibit at the conference. Immediately afterward, following pushback from religious conservatives, CPAC organizers pulled the atheist nonprofit’s exhibitor table and refunded the booth fee, citing Silverman’s assertive “tone” in interviews—even as the conference featured infamously outspoken conservative figures from the 2014 main stage. Although American Atheists was not permitted to table, Silverman registered as an attendee to distribute  materials and was well-received by press as well as attendees.

American Atheists will return to CPAC just 5 weeks ahead of its 2015 National Convention, April 2-5 at the Peabody Hotel in Memphis, Tennessee. Speakers include human-rights activist and politician Ayaan Hirsi Ali, founder and Discovery Channel host Marshall Brain, comedians Trace Bealieu and Frank Conniff of the cast of Mystery Science Theater 3000, and many more.

  • Kyle Dain

    Hi. I hope this makes some sense
    because it is very difficult for me to put thoughts into words, although
    I do a better job typing than speaking them. In addition to Autism
    (asperger’s), I am Attention Deficit to the extreme, which makes
    everything difficult.

    Yesterday, I attended my mother’s funeral and was asked to leave the
    funeral home simply because I told the truth. My father asked me if I
    had “said goodbye to my mother yet”, so I replied “she’s dead, she can’t
    hear me.” I was only speaking the truth.

    I was told “You’re not welcome here.”

    The whole place was filled with strange religious people who deal in
    delusions and not facts. It was very uncomfortable for me. They were
    like deranged aliens (from another planet, not mexicans). They spoke
    strange words, and belittled me for not being “one of them”.

    Because I speak literally, live in the real world, and deal with
    facts, I have no friends or family that will help me. I am 47 years
    old, had a major heart attack a year ago, and live in a dumpster. Well,
    not really a dumpster, but it may as well be.

    I was entrapped by this mentally disturbed woman, Lynnette Chiesa,
    who tortures and abuses me on a daily basis. She has destroyed my house
    with garbage, animal waste, and (her) human waste. She belittles me
    with awful name-calling usually many times per hour on average.

    We were on the TV show Hoarding, Buried Alive a few years ago.
    Season 5, Episode 9. (look it up). She has made it her goal to make the
    house worse than it ever was before the cleanup.

    She has caused all utilities to be shut off with no hope of reconnection. It has been that way for over a year.

    I will freeze to death this winter unless someone helps.

    I am being held hostage in my own house (dumpster).

    That woman defecates in front of my house, and urinates in a cup and
    throws it sometimes on me. I can’t stand it. She lives worse than any
    kind of animal that I can think of.

    She piles her garbage near my feet and obliterates any kind of
    walkway. I have always been very clumsy with my feet, and I trip
    easily. She knows this.

    I have been *BEGGING* her to stop all of this, but she refuses and
    makes fun of me. She threatens to cut my throat when I sleep.

    I applied for Social Security disability a few years ago, but keep
    getting denied because I don’t have enough documentation. Now, I am
    down to the end of that process. One more denial, and I will have to
    start all over.

    I am literally too disabled to know what to do to properly apply for
    disability. I have no insurance to see anyone who can help me, and no
    way to get insurance. I am not able to get Welfare, I fall too far
    below the guidelines (the easiest way of explaining it). I don’t know
    what to do about her and this awful mess.

    They will be putting my house up for Sheriff sale because of unpaid
    taxes, and sue me for the cleanup costs. I can’t pay anything, I am
    totally disabled. They will imprison me for life because of this.

    I don’t know what to do! Someone please help me. I have spoken with
    local people and (so-called) charities, but they just ignore me. It is
    human nature to ignore something that their little minds aren’t capable
    of dealing with.

    This is VERY REAL, and I am going to die unless someone will take the time to try and understand my situation.

    Thanks for your time. I am going to type my REAL name and address because I have nothing to hide.

    Kyle Dain

    1103 Stowe Ave.

    McKees Rocks, PA


    Phone: 412-853-4505

    If you phone me, and I am rude, it’s because I may have thought you
    were a bill collector or salesman. No offense intended, please try
    back. Thanks.

    By the way, in case I forgot, I have multiple photographic, video and
    audio proof of all this. I am a literal person, I do not imagine.

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