My friend Justin told me last week that he and his group are putting together a big event called Rock Beyond Belief at Fort Bragg, North Carolina in March or April 2011. Once I realized what it was I very much wanted to share it with you. Rock Beyond Belief is a free secular festival which started as a counter-event to the "offensive" Rock the Fort concert which took place on Fort Bragg - at taxpayer's expense - this past September.
But Rock Beyond Belief is going to be more than just a reaction to the RtF. Here's what they say on their About page: "Rock Beyond Belief is A Day of Fun and Entertainment for the Rest of Us. In the spirit of Richard Dawkins’ Out Campaign, we are embracing the fact that just by coming out and saying “we are non-theists, and also we are your firefighters, your military members, and your neighbors” that we help to shed the negative connotations and debunk the myths associated with being a non-believer."
Eventually they'd like to spread the secular message to other military installations. Read about Rock the Fort at the above link and here.
One painless way to help is to spread the word: Go to RBB's Facebook page and 'Like' it. Encourage your secular friends to do the same.
If you are secular and you live anywhere near Fort Bragg, this should be a pretty cool event. Here's the lineup so far. Everyone is tentative until the exact date is set:
Dale McGowan - edited and co-authored Parenting Beyond Belief and Raising Freethinkers and serves as executive director of Foundation Beyond Belief, an influential secular nonprofit that champions a rotating roster of deserving charities.
Margaret Downey – Former president (and current board member) of the Atheist Alliance International, founder of Freethought Society, and many other influential organizations.
Eugenie Scott – Executive Director of the National Center for Science Education, key player in the Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial about creationism and public education.
Michael Werner – Former president of the American Humanist Association, the nation’s largest Humanist organization.
Hemant Mehta – of the immensely popular FriendlyAtheist.com blog, and author of I Sold My Soul on eBay
Jen McCreight – blogger at BlagHag and the originator of the Boobquake internet meme.
Mikey Weinstein – President of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation and Nobel Peace Prize nominee.
Ed Brayton – Co-founder and president of Michigan Citizens for Science and co-founder of The Panda’s Thumb and maintains Dispatches From the Culture Wars.
Jeffrey Lewis – Singer/songwriter, and Anti-folk legend and indie comic book artist.
MelodySheep - John Boswell, is the creative force behind Symphony Science, a series of amazing videos that bridge the gap between science and art.
Spoonboy – David Combs’ solo side project balances the deep philosophical questions of the day with the optimism of youth consistently delivered through super catchy melodies.
They are trying to get Tim Minchin, an awesome Australian skeptic and atheist who puts on a fantastic and fun show. You can help by going here and putting 28307 as your zip code. The foxhole atheists at Fort Bragg will be very grateful. (see the Tim Minchin link to watch him perform Storm, an excellent example of his work.)
Congratulations to Justin and his group for putting together this huge project and countering the christianification of our military. We need and support foxhole atheists like you.