For this brief article, I will just make a video recommendation and provide some commentary — basically just my thoughts after watching the video. The video in question is "Palestinians: What do you think of atheists?" Check it out below and read some of my thoughts.
I recommend this video for two basic reasons: (1) it shows that there is bigotry toward atheists and that there are fundamental, structural issues with religions (in this case Islam), which easily segregate rather than unify, or lead to hate rather than love; (2) it shows that even people of the same faith differ from one another, sometimes rather significantly; it shows that Muslims, in this case Palestinians, are not all monsters who think and feel the same. Criticize religions and their structural and ideological problems, yes; spread bigotry toward peoples, no.
Some of the people interviewed were fairer than others, while others were not very fair at all, to say the least. Judge for yourself. And ask yourself, could you not find similar answers from Christians in the west? In some places, one might find more extremism and in others less. But I would expect to get answers like these in the Bible Belt of America, for example. I have sort of lost count of how many times I have been told that I will burn in hell, by Christians and Muslims alike, so to single out Islam as the only “bad religion” is nonsense. I am very well aware that there are Muslims who absolutely dislike me for my atheism and have values with which I strongly disagree, but they are still people and should not be collectively demonized and condemned to death. The only thing we achieve by adopting the monocultural dogma of the far right is to further widen the divide that already exists between peoples; we must move forward with acceptance and a multicultural — albeit secularized and human-rights-oriented — view of what a free society ought to be.