I thought it might be worthwhile to open a discussion for members here to ask about atheists and atheism. I am a moderator/owner of a large atheism community on Google Plus, and I think this has given me a very broad experience with people who consider themselves atheists. I will try to answer any questions as honestly and objectively as I can. Here’s a few starters:
Atheism has been likened to a “club for people who don’t play golf”. (I think I learned that from @Patrick.) I describe it as a negative trait, meaning one that is lacking rather than “bad”. Atheism does not describe any qualities a person may possess.
“Atheist” is itself an odd term IMO, because we do not general describe groups of people by attributes that do not apply. Ex: A-golfers, A-bowlers, A-vegetarians, A-philatelists, etc…
Atheists do not “believe in nothing.”
There are a lot of sub-groups that fall under the umbrella of atheism. To name a few:
anti-theists (the angry bunch)
ignostic (can’t even define God)
apathists (don’t care)
Laveyan Satanists (rare)
Raelians (rare, and weird)
(send suggestions, I will add)
Atheists often disagree about just what it means to be an atheist. It’s a common argument.
As far as I can determine, atheists trolling Christian online communities is about as common as Christians trolling atheism communities. It’s equally bad behavior either way.
According to some published studies, atheists score higher on Intelligence testing than religious people. This may be technically true, but the average is only a few points on the IQ-scale, which is practically meaningless. This difference is likely due to education rather than inherent intelligence (atheists tend to have more education). I shoot this one down whenever I can, and you should too.
Atheists never eat babies. (No, Never? Well, hardly ever).