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Hello Americans, I’m Todd Starnes. Stand by for news and commentary next.
The Associated Press wrote a story the other day about how Uber and Lyft drivers are using their vehicles to promote Christianity. In many cases, the drivers play Christian music or listen to sermons.
They see their work as a sort of mobile Christian ministry — sharing the Good News with their passengers.
It was only a matter of times for the Freedom From Religion Foundation to hit a speed bump.
“Non-religious and minority religious riders do not feel safe, welcomed, or respected when they are confronted with proselytizing while stuck in a moving vehicle with a driver preaching at them,” the aggrieved atheist organization whined.
They claim that drivers are discriminating against atheists. And they want Uber and Lyft to implement policies that would forbid drivers from sharing their faith.
They fired off letters to both companies accusing some drivers of proselytizing unsuspecting riders. “Missionized against their will,” – is how the angry atheists described the situation.
We recognize that the topic of religion may sometimes come up innocently in casual
conversation. That is a far cry from the situation described by the Associated Press and other
outlets, involving calculating individuals who drive for ridesharing companies with the explicit
intention of targeting riders for missionizing. No one should have to pay to be missionized
against their will.
Uber is “committed to creating a safe and welcoming space for everyone, regardless of
background,” and one of Uber’s guidelines is “treat everyone with respect.” Non-religious and
minority religious riders do not feel safe, welcomed, or respected when they are confronted with proselytizing while stuck in a moving vehicle with a driver preaching at them. Uber does not tolerate discrimination based on religion, but if its drivers are welcome to inquire into and
challenge the beliefs of its riders, there is bound to be discrimination and harassment.
Nonreligious or minority religion Uber users should not be made to feel excluded, or like
outsiders because an Uber driver is allowed to push personal religious beliefs upon passengers.
Currently, about three-in-ten U.S. adults (29 percent) are religious “nones” — people whoFreedom From Religion Foundation
describe themselves as atheists, agnostics or “nothing in particular” when asked about their
religious identity. More than a third of the population falls into one of these two categories and that’s a lot of people to offend. Furthermore, many such individuals will feel literally unsafe
when they are at the mercy of a driver more interested in converting them or denigrating their
nonbeliefs, than in offering them professional transportation. Such ranting is a distraction and
potential traffic hazard. Minimally, they may feel they must humor or placate the driver who is
disrespecting their views. At worst, they may feel personally threatened or be in jeopardy if they
Seems to me with all the road rage on America’s highways, even the atheist crowd would welcome a calming and inspirational presence on our roadway.
There’s a reason why Carrie Underwood asked Jesus to take the wheel, and not an atheist.
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