Today one member left HFSD for political reasons. My response as a president was:

Thank you for your prompt response, ....
I will ask John, the HFSD Treasurer, to return your membership fee for 2018, and we won't feature you on our website.
Personally, I understand your frustration with the political reality, probably as well as many other members of our community would. Our nonprofit is specifically not a political organization though, by law, and has another noble mission.
I hope you will find many great opportunities to take a political stand and to be actively defending what is right.
Wish you the very best,
Lena Nechet 

 (I have refunded $30 on June 27, Transaction ID: 2MY92963TC770142C).

As the President, I am ultimately responsible for all functions of this organization and its lawful status. After accepting this position I carefully read the documentation and educated myself about nonprofits in general. I will operate in accordance with HFSD Bylaws and the State of California laws.

For Your Information: 

From our Secretary of State endorsement.
And these are my principles, in short.

Origins of he Issue

At this point, I can only guess that this strange political issue originated from this public meetup topic, posted by Wilfredo, our Board Director and event organizer:

Below is a copy of it.


Fox News - Sean Hannity Bitch-slapped by Atheist
16 replies

  • Dave Silverman rips Hannity a new one! This "debate" exemplifies how irrational and hateful many Xtians can be. It's a perfect example of the rationality and intelligence of a secular person versus the irrationality and absurdity of a religious person.
    3 months ago
  • Dear Wilfredo, may I suggest we keep this group not excessively political, especially regarding insignificant current events?

    Also, could we avoid ridiculing intellectual abilities of religious people in general?

    3 months ago
  • I definitely agree, Lena. We should minimize political engagement and view people that are indoctrinated into a religious viewpoint as victims. The issue is belief, not people. We should focus on what we can do to help others question their beliefs and not be overly concerned with providing rebuttals for poor critical thinking skills.
    3 months ago
  • Very well. Points taken. I just wanted to liven up the Discussion section. I understand your viewpoints, but I have a different one. Atheism is inherently political; we cannot avoid being political. In fact, I contend that we HAVE to be political (because that's how things get done in the U.S.) and that we need to strongly oppose people like Sean Hannity, who think this country should be a "Christian Nation" and who want to do everything they can to mold this country into one.
    3 months ago
  • White Evangelical Christians are overwhelmingly Republican. Secular Americans are disproportionately Democratic (and about 15% are Libertarians). We strongly oppose the viewpoints and public policy recommendations of Evangelical Christians. How can this NOT be political?
    3 months ago
  • Wilfredo - I appreciate that you livened up the conversation. I hadn’t seen that clip for a long time. Hannity is so smug and self-righteous.
    3 months ago
  • Thank you, John, I appreciate your input and share your approach.
    3 months ago
  • Wilfredo, thank you for understanding. In the future, please consider how your posting would reflect on other members of the Humanist Fellowship - we might not share your political opinions, and we are here for representing humanist values.

    On this site you are clearly listed as a board member and therefore represent HFSD, and as the President, I am responsible for our public image.

    If you discuss political issues the way you do here on the meetups you host, please include a warning at the top of the description, and make sure during the meetings that the attendees know you are not talking on behalf of the organization. Thanks!
    3 months ago
  • This can be a fuzzy area for organizers, but my knee jerk reaction is to not censor or attempt to control speech. Our entire movement depends on the freedom to share our ideas. It gets fuzzy when a member is also an ambassador of the organization.

    It is a good practice to criticize bad ideas. It is a bad practice to paint groups with a single and broad brush.

    Wilfredo is posting something he hopes will stimulate a discussion. I may or may not like or agree with what he says, but I defend his right to say it, and I encourage others to engage in conversation and debate with Wilfredo if they are so inclined.

    I opened the video link right away, and was happy Wilfredo shared it.
    3 months ago
  • Another area where it can be fussy, is when we attempt to determine who is or is not offended. What is offensive to me is Sean Hannity having David Silverman on, not letting him speak, and completely misrepresenting, over and over again, David’s opinions (“beliefs”). My own opinions align with David’s more so than with Sean Hannitry’s, so, you might say I want Fox news to stop berating atheists, and making assumptions about what atheists believe or don’t believe.

    The only thing I found slightly objectionable was the term “bitch-slapped”. Bitch can be a derogatory term used against women. There are other words that would communicate the same sentiment.
    3 months ago
  • Politics (political action on the part of citizens and/or the elected) is one of the most powerful ways to change a culture. It was our legal system, and the laws of legislators, that ended every bad practice in this county. Like segregation.

    What I want are engaging conversations that are respectful.
    3 months ago
  • In my view, we as Humanists are faced with a political battle whether we like it or not. Religious conservatives, who are currently in power at the national level, are acting against Humanist values and imposing their bigoted views on all of us in the form of regressive laws and regulations.
    3 months ago
  • “Cautious, careful people, always casting about to preserve their reputation and social standing, never can bring about a reform. Those who are really in earnest must be willing to be anything or nothing in the world's estimation, and publicly and privately, in season and out, avow their sympathy with despised and persecuted ideas and their advocates, and bear the consequences...”

    ― Susan B. Anthony
    3 months ago
  • HFSD is an educational organization, not a political one. I am here to promote humanist values and to better public image of atheism. I will actively protect our members, especially those who joined the board with me to do most of the work, from their personal public image being damaged by association with political positions they might not support.
    3 months ago
  • I am unlikely to be convinced otherwise by vague quotations. I am going to adhere to the mission stated in our foundational document: "...advance public awareness of Humanism and the acceptance of its principles of social progress through democratic dialog, the promotion of critical thinking, community service, personal acts of compassion, and the pursuit of justice."
    3 months ago
  • There is no free speech fuzziness here: this is an official web presence of HFSD, and the representative members should express their humanism-unrelated current political concerns on other forums, especially if they are unwilling to word them appropriately. Furthermore, everyone can still participate in this discussion, I did not delete it, and no free speech was suppressed. But I am the one who took the responsibility for our media interactions, and I ask everyone to be more thoughtful.

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