Welcome back to "Doggerel," where I ramble on about words and phrases that are misused, abused, or just plain meaningless.
Just about any outspoken atheist will inevitably be called a "fundamentalist atheist" as if that term meant anything. Everyone should know this by now, but atheism is a lack of belief in gods. That's it. Full stop. Excessive pointing out of the period.
Beyond that commonality, there's nothing tying atheists together as a group. There's no dogma to be fundamentalist about, much less to inspire the sorts of acts religious fundamentalists are known for: Bombings, beheadings, book burning, etcetera. Captain Awesome got accused of being equivalent to the fundamentalists he bashes, but he knew the proper, but Not Safe For Work retort.
Having a sharp tongue is nothing like putting infidels to the sword.
What's really annoying when it happens to me is that it's typically used as an appeal to motive, as if all my complaints about foolish arguments are all about hating believers. It's not. If someone says something stupid, I will usually feel compelled to point out that it's stupid, as well as the hows and whys of its stupidity. I once had a meatspace argument with someone about whether or not π is a constant, since my adversary was arguing that constant (more precise) recalculations meant it wasn't. It proceeded much the same way a lot of my online arguments did, and with the same fervor. Did pointing out that there's a difference between human-made imperfect calculations and the actual value make me a fundamentalist mathematicianist or something? (Oh, and I managed to get my point across by saying that all human calculations pretty much meant that we just waited longer and longer to round off what would be an infinite process.)
The point is that when I argue about something, I don't tolerate fallacious arguments, as should be the case in any argument about any subject. Pointing out the fallacies behind common theistic arguments is just one of my strengths.
Another annoyance is that pointing out the unlawful, unconstitutional, and/or unethical acts of religious people is often somehow "atheist fundamentalism," as if preventing a government official from coercing prayer, or endorsing a government religion is the same as coercing a different prayer or a different government religion. Welcome to Moonside!
Still another annoyance is when we insist on having science being taught in science classes, we're again so branded. First, science is science. Teaching everything we know about evolution, geology, etcetera thanks to the scientific method is not fundamentalism anymore than teaching "1 + 1 = 2" is. If you want to argue that any of that is wrong, use the scientific method to do so, not favored buzz phrases. Second, science is separate from atheism. It's entirely possible to believe in both evolution and theism. I even pulled it off for a while, though I was going against Occam's Razor at the time. I can also imagine there are some atheists out there who don't believe in evolution. After all, there are some religions out there that happen to be atheistic.
Now we move to one of the favorite tyrants the doggerel-users like to bring up (No, not Hitler. That's a different doggerel, for some other day): Joseph Stalin, a guy who did quite a lot of nasty things to unify the Soviet Union under atheism. Of course, I will say, without equivocation, that Stalin was evil, and used evil means towards that end. The problem with using Stalin as an example of fundamentalist atheism is that he had a particular dogma that only happened to include atheism, but went anti-science in many cases. In short, Stalin is nothing like the typical accused atheist. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if he'd call for my execution.