It is remarkable how many people insist I am not an atheist. It seems obvious to me that I do not believe that any god exists, and that makes me an atheist. Nevertheless, here these people are, so insistent that I cannot possibly be an atheist. "You really believe, you just don't know it." (How's that again?) Sometimes I hear something like "You believe in something, and that is really God" or "you are still looking, but you'll find Him." (He is invited to stop by my house at any time.) When I have the time to converse with these people, however, it usually comes down to this: I am really an agnostic, they say, because I am willing to admit that I do not know there is not any god. It is apparently so important for people to believe that I am "really just an agnostic," that I find this to be a haunting sign of the hold religion has on people. It is tragic that the mere thought of a good friend or relative being an actual, avowed atheist is so horrible that it mus...