Atheist = Does not believe in deities. RR may have been right about one thing. I'm an Atheist. I don't believe in any theistic deities. That's lack of belief.
"A" is the atheist and "B" is the theist.Please answer: I believe no god or gods exist.
Answer that, and I will tell you whether you are an atheist.
You can further refine your answer if you ask those choosing "A" above the following question:
I claim to know with certainty that gods cannot or do not exist
"A" is the gnostic atheist, and "B" is the agnostic atheist.
The two questions can be combined thusly:
Gods do not exist:
A. Definitely true (gnostic atheist)
B. Probably true (agnostic atheist)
C. Probably false (agnostic theist)
D. Definitely false (gnostic theist)
Incidentally, there was a time not long ago when an unbelieving former Christian, especially a younger woman, would not likely have been willing to use the word "atheist" to describe herself. One of the consequences of so much discussion on this subject is the gradual removal of the stigma associated with the word "atheist". By debating a theist who seems hellbent on getting us to conform to his preferred usage, we develop a sense of solidarity, and little by little, come to feel better about using the word. I have, I didn't like calling myself an atheist when I first came to Topix five years ago,.but I do so without reservation now.