USA Today Touts Atheist Summer Camp

July 2nd, 2010 11:41 AM

USA Today recently gave free advertising in the form of a 900-word profile to a summer camp, Camp Quest. But unlike other summer camps, however, Camp Quest is for children of atheists and agnostics.

In “Summer camp caters to kids of atheists, agnostics,” Meredith Heagney touted Camp Quest as being just like any other summer camp, but she admitted that, while there is an “emphasis on open-mindedness, poking fun at faith isn’t forbidden.”

One teenage camper stated that they “do talk sometimes about how silly … different religions are and what they to do.”

Even though it’s okay to make “poke fun” at different faiths at Camp Quest, Heagney presented no critics to poke fun at Camp Quest.

Instead Heagney attempted to paint the weeklong camp positivity and explained that the first rule of the camp was to “respect all people, whatever their beliefs, which you encounter while you are here.”

Katie Hladky, a volunteer, teaches campers about different religions. She reassured that she “won’t bad-mouth faith or tell the kids what to think.” Hladky also stated that she doesn’t want children to be “indoctrinated.” After class, Hladkey’s scrupulously unindoctrinated pupils head off to play games as part of teams derisively named for the religions and religious practices the counselors scorn.

Heagney also touted activities that campers partake in. In one activity campers are told that there are two invisible unicorns and “anyone who can prove that isn’t true will win a prize.” The point of the game is to show that “the burden of proof should be on those who say [a unicorn or God] does.” During mealtimes, presentations are made by cabins on “famous freethinkers.”