New York: Heaven for Atheists?
New York already has a rep for being filed with a bunch of scary, godless liberals -- you know, the kind of un-American scumbags that ride subways, rent apartments and -- perhaps worst -- work in THE MEDIA!!!
Still, you might wonder: Is New York actually a good place for non-believers to live?
The Secular Coalition for America -- basically, an atheist-rights group -- has an answer for you.
The non-profit recently released its 2011 congressional scorecard -- a study that looks at state reps to see how well they do in representing atheists, agnostics, skeptics, freethinking humanists, and pretty much anyone else who doesn't believe.
How did they do it? The committee basically analyzed how pols voted on several legislations that dealt directly with religion, from federal funding for religious schools, to faith-based cuts to family planning, to land grants for Boy Scouts.
So how did New York score?
There were two As (Gary Ackerman and Jerrold Nadler), six Bs, 12 Cs, zero Ds, and nine Fs. In the U.S. overall, there were 17 As (all Democrats), 55 Bs (also all Democrats), 116 Cs, 10 Ds, and 233 Fs (200 of which are Republican!). The tally doesn't add up to the exact number of reps, because some have left Congress or didn't vote on all the measures.
Amanda Knief, who heads the group's government relations branch, told Runnin' Scared that New York did "better than most."
"Taken as a whole, New York looks like the representatives do a fairly good job of representing secular and non-faith Americans, but there is plenty of room to improve."
Most disconcerting for Knief, however, is the trend of non-voting in Congress.
"We were dismayed by the number of representatives who did not vote. There were so many non-votes, we really felt that that was something."
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Village Voice's biggest stories.
- We Found the Most Fascinating (and Depressing) Site on the Internet
- This Brooklyn Local is Making a Web Series about Growing Weed
- New York City's Food Pantries Are Struggling to Keep Up With a Growing Demand For Meals