That's what Greta Christina says. Damned if we do and damned if we don't.
When atheists focus our critiques on conservative or extremist religions, we get accused of ignoring the tolerant progressive ones, and lumping all religions together. But when we do criticize progressive or moderate religions, we're accused of mean-spirited overkill, of alienating people who could be our allies.This is interesting. She offers arguments to back it up. See here.
When atheists criticize Christianity, we get accused of being cowards for not criticizing Islam. But when we criticize Islam, we get accused of cultural insensitivity.
When atheists focus our critiques on ordinary religious beliefs held by the majority of people, we get accused of ignoring advanced modern theology and focusing on outdated beliefs that nobody takes seriously anymore. But when atheists do argue against modern theology, we get accused of elitism. What's more, when we argue against Modern Theologian A, we're accused of ignoring Modern Theologian B... and when we argue against Modern Theologian B, we're accused of ignoring Modern Theologian C... in an infinite regress of movable goalposts.
When atheists attempt to present an organized, unified front, we get accused of being Stalinist group-think robots. But when we're honest about disagreements among us, we get derided and dismissed for the supposed "schisms" that are supposedly dooming our movement to failure.
When atheists say we don't believe in God, we're told that we can't possibly be moral people. But when we make our morality clear in word and deed, many believers insist that we must be spiritual or religious or following God unconsciously -- even if we deny it.
As long as we don't know exactly how organic life began from non-life, then atheists' conclusion that life almost certainly began as physical cause and effect will be called blind faith in materialism. But if we can replicate abiogenesis (the origins of life from non-life) in the laboratory -- something that's expected to happen in the next few years -- this will be seen as proof that life had to be intentionally created. After all, it required people working in a lab for decades to make it happen!
If atheists don't offer specific arguments and evidence supporting atheism, we get told, "See? Atheism is just as much a matter of faith as religion." But when we do provide evidence and arguments for our position, we get accused of proselytizing.
If atheists admit that they can't be 100% certain of God's non-existence, believers pounce on that fragment of uncertainty, and atheism gets accused of being as much a matter of faith as religion. But if atheists insist that they are 100% certain that God does not exist (or as close to 100% certain as anyone can be), then believers pounce in that certainty... and atheism gets accused of being as much a matter of faith as religion.
When we speak out in any way about our atheism -- and when we continue to organize, and to make ourselves and our ideas more visible and vocal, and to generally turn ourselves into a serious movement for social change -- we get accused of being hostile, fanatical, rude, evangelical, bigoted, and extremist. But if we don't speak out, if we don't organize, if we don't forge ourselves into a powerful and visible movement... then the bigotry and misinformation and discrimination against us will continue unabated.