Stray from the Flock: Story of a Black Atheist

2013, Society  -  51 min Leave a Comment
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Andre is an atheist and like so many others he happens to be the only atheist in his family. But why is being a black atheist so much different? Why does it seem that belief in God in black America is seen as mandatory? His family always knew that he was an atheist but he never really asked them how they felt about it... until now.

Andre lives in Canton, Ohio. He has lived there his entire life. The way he sees it, people in Ohio only care about two things: football and God, in that order. There are churches everywhere. You can't go one mile without seeing a church somewhere in Canton.

In this documentary he wasn't trying to travel around the country and ask random black people how they feel about atheists. He wanted to focus on his own family, his religious family. He wanted them to be as open and as honest as they wanted.

Andre remembers the first person he ever talked to about having the feelings of doubt. It was his aunt Eunice. He went to her one day and asked her if God is real why all these bad things happen, especially in his own family? His grandma just had her second brain aneurysm, and a friend of his was shot and killed because of stupid gang stuff. Even though he doubted God he was afraid of what would happen if he didn't believe.

As he got older he let couple of his friends know how he felt about things and some of them were OK with it, but some of them thought that he was "acting white." Apparently for some reason black people see atheism as a "white thing", something that black people just don't do. Since the talk with his aunt Eunice the seed has been planted so to speak, so he started reading the Bible. He quickly realized how absurd it is.