The president of American Atheists, that obnoxious group of "enlightenment thinkers" who erect those "Happy Solstice" billboards during the Christmas season, has now been fired over a #MeToo allegation.
According to the Salt Lake Tribune, President David Silverman got his pink slip over "allegations of financial and sexual misconduct." On Friday, Buzzfeed News released an article detailing allegations from two women who claim Silverman, 51, had nonconsensual contact with them.
“We take our obligation to create safe and welcoming communities for our staff, volunteers, members and supporters very seriously,” Nick Fish, American Atheists’ national program director, said in a statement. “We have zero tolerance for the type of behavior alleged in these accounts. We will continue to demand the highest standards and accountability from our leaders, staff and volunteers.”
Silverman's attorney, Sebastian Ionno, maintains that all sexual acts were consensual.
On top of the #MeToo accusations, American Atheists allegedly discovered Silverman had committed financial misconduct while promoting his 2015 book, “Fighting God: An Atheist Manifesto for a Religious World,” and appointed to the staff a woman he was allegedly sexually involved with.
In the report to Buzzfeed News, one of the women claimed that Silverman assaulted her in a hotel room after the American Atheists convention in Memphis, Tennessee, in 2015.
“He physically pressed me to the wall and began to kiss me forcefully, grabbed my breasts and put his hand into my leggings,” the woman said in a complaint delivered to American Atheists along with pictures she says are of bruises she suffered at Silverman’s hands.
The second woman maintains she met Silverman at a bar in 2012 while she was in college and only agreed to his hotel invitation after becoming intoxicated.
“I don’t believe I was in a position to be able to give consent. I was very intoxicated,” Rose St. Clair told Buzzfeed.
“I felt my interest in working for the organization was used as a way for him to have power so that I would have sex with him,” St. Clair said.
David Silverman was more than just an atheist, but an aggressive anti-theist. After becoming president of American Atheists in 2010, the man helped erect mean-spirited billboards in Times Square during Christmas time, fought public monuments to the Ten Commandments, and most especially, opposed the 9/11 memorial displaying a cross made of steel beams pulled from the rubble of the World Trade Center. His antics became so juvenile that even Jon Stewart had to call him out on it: