AN ATHEIST SPEAKS by Robert Harold Scott Introduction That which follows is a talk, about

---
Master Index Current Directory Index Go to SkepticTank Go to Human Rights activist Keith Henson Go to Scientology cult

Skeptic Tank!

********************************************************* AN ATHEIST SPEAKS by Robert Harold Scott ********************************************************* Introduction That which follows is a talk, about one hour long, by Mr. Robert H. Scott, a retired court stenographer, of San Francisco, California, and broadcast over radio station KQW in San Francisco on November 17, 1946. It is a classic, transcribed from four old-fashioned, fragile 12-inch records -- "platters." Such records cannot now be reproduced. So that an historical record of one of the first radio presentations on the subject of Atheism would be preserved, this verbatim transcript of the speech was made. Mr. Scott's mode of presentation was in a softly spoken, but well modulated, voice. Despite an excessive hissing noise produced by the needle, the entire content of the presentation, titled "An Atheist Speaks," has been preserved and is given to you, now, in the following transcript. ********* Ladies and gentlemen: On July 19 of this year the Federal Communications Commission handed down a decision with regard to radio broadcasting which is a new milestone on the highway of freedom of speech. With an eye on our Constitutional Bill of Rights, and in recognition of the fact that the existence of a god is neither a self-evident nor a demonstrated truth but is purely a matter of opinion, the Commission pointed out that "freedom of religious belief necessarily carries with it freedom to disbelieve"; and it affirmed that "immunity from criticism is dangerous, dangerous to the institution or belief to which the immunity is granted as well as to the freedom of the people generally." I do not throw stones at church windows. I do not mock at people kneeling in prayer. I respect everyone's right to have and to express the belief that a god exists. But I require respect for the corresponding right to express disbelief in such a being. On August 10, 1787, Thomas Jefferson, whose memory every true American reveres, wrote a letter to a young nephew, Peter Carr by name. In that letter Jefferson gave his nephew some advice, part of which was as follows: << Fix Reason firmly in her seat, and call to her <

---

E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank