Openly Secular, Atheist Man in Town at Center of Supreme Court Prayer Case Urges Secular Americans to Step Forward

Atheist to Offer Secular Invocation Tuesday in Greece, NY

Secular Groups Offer Resources to Individuals Delivering Secular Invocations

Washington, DC — Dan Courtney, the atheist man who will offer a secular invocation tomorrow in the town at the center of the controversial Supreme Court public prayer ruling, today joined with leaders from Openly Secular and other prominent secular organizations to call on other atheists, humanists and nonreligious people to speak publicly about their core values and beliefs.

Courtney will offer the secular invocation Tuesday at the Greece Town Board.

Following the controversial Supreme Court ruling in May, the American Humanist Association — a partner within Openly Secular — launched a program to provide resources for people to deliver secular invocations during legislative meetings.

The newly-formed Openly Secular coalition is leading the call to action as part of its mission to increase acceptance of secular people and eliminate discrimination.

"We are working toward a day when it is not news for an American to deliver a secular invocation in Greece or at organizations and groups across the country," said Dan Courtney. "The only way for us to make that happen is to urge secular individuals to come forward and to support them when they do. Instead of using religious language to divide us, I intend to use secular language to bring us together as Americans."

"We believe the very practice of being open about your beliefs helps create a culture that promotes tolerance and a society where everyone is accepted," said Robyn Blumner, spokesperson for Openly Secular and Executive Director for the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science. "Today's call continues our work to support secular Americans who step forward and are open about their beliefs and values."

"More than a hundred people have stepped forward and been approved to give secular invocations — a major step toward an open society," said David Niose, AHA legal director. "We want to make sure people have what they need when it comes to offering a secular invocation so that legislative meetings can be nondiscriminatory."