User:D.R. Dotson

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I grew up in a typical white middle class family in the buckle of the bible belt... Louisville, Ky. My mother is a Baptist Bible scholar. During my childhood, my mother would challenge me to read certain books of the bible and then take a test she would devise. If I passed, I was rewarded with gifts and money. She was intending to prepare me for a future as a preacher. I remained unshakably confident in my belief right up until the first time it was questioned. That was the occasion of watching Carl Sagan's 'Cosmos' on PBS. 
It was like gaining sight after a lifetime of blindness. 'So you're telling me the world makes sense, and can be understood by anyone who takes the time to study it?' It was a revelation. From then on I became the black sheep of the family, spurning church and prayer in favor of scientific texts, astronomy, and the physical sciences.
I went on to study Physics, Astronomy, and Mathematics at the University of Louisville. After a terrible traffic collision left me in severe pain for several years I developed a dependency on prescription pain medicine, which exposed me to the three ring circus of the recovery community. I found it to be a deplorable case of religion preying on people who were weak, exhausted, and desperate for help to save their lives and families. The 12-Step community takes these people in and inculcates them using precisely the same methods as any other cult.
At present, I work in the telecom industry with satellite ground-control, and volunteer my time to offer a secular alternative to 12-step recovery through groups such as SmartRecovery.Org and the Secular Organization for Sobriety.
I am the founding member of the UofL chapter of the Secular Student Alliance, a contributing member of the Louisville Atheists and Freethinkers 501(c)3 and the Kentucky Secular Society.
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