Atheism expands on the Western Slope

By: Cassie Heykoop Email
By: Cassie Heykoop Email

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. Put simply, Atheism means "without religion" and lately the Western Slope has seen more and more secular groups banding together.

The Western Colorado Atheists and Freethinkers group was founded in 2007 to act as the secular voice of Western Colorado. Since then their group has expanded, adding even another branch outside of Grand Junction.

"There is a growing number of secular people here and there is discrimination against people with a secular point of view," Anne Landman from the Western Colorado Atheists and Freethinkers said.

The group began as a way for the secular community to come together, discuss ideas and have a voice, but according to Landman, many don't want others to know their beliefs.

"They don't want to reveal that they have a secular viewpoint in their work places," Landman said. "They're afraid of losing their jobs."

They meet once a month at the Laughing Dog Coffee Shop in Grand Junction. During meetings the group discusses issues regarding the separation of church and state. They also take action on other humanitarian movements and volunteering opportunities.

"The community is the best part of it," Keenan Ventling from CMU's Secular Student Alliance said. "It's just a bunch of people who want to do good and want to promote secular thought."

The organization also partners with a number of groups like Humanists Doing Good and CMU's chapter of Secular Student Alliance.

This week a branch even began in Montrose for those who are unable to make the trek to Grand Junction every month.

"They have a really conservative community that has an extreme religious focus and they had no place to find each other and to address issues down their of separation of church and state," Landman said.

Several members explained that they hope the Western Slope Atheists and Freethinkers continues to grow and encourage more people to be open about their beliefs.

"Its hugely gratifying to have this kind of community," Landman said. "There are people that really depend on our group."

KKCO firmly believes in freedom of speech for all and we are happy to provide this forum for the community to share opinions and facts. We ask that commenters keep it clean, keep it truthful, stay on topic and be responsible. Comments left here do not necessarily represent the viewpoint of KKCO 11News.

powered by Disqus
KKCO NBC 11 News 2531 Blichmann Avenue Grand Junction, CO 81505 Station Phone: 970.243.1111 Business Fax: 970.243.1770 Newsroom Fax: 970.245.3793 News Tip & Contest Line: 970.255.8477
Copyright © 2002-2015 - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 267876681 -
Gray Television, Inc.