Okay. Let’s say that’s true for the moment. Let’s say atheism really is its own religion.
If so, that means we could just as easily say that every religion is a form of atheism. Religious people can’t be against atheism too much, because every religion has atheism as part of it. True believers are themselves atheists.
If there’s only one true god, then all those others don’t exist. So, when they look at all the religions on the planet and all the gods that people worship all over the world, true believers say that 99.99% of those gods simply don’t exist. They’ve eliminated the possibility of thousands of gods and left only one.
That’s just one step away from total atheism. An atheist just takes the argument one tiny step further. Atheists just round up from “99.99% false” to “100% false.” Really, Christians and atheists are arguing over a fraction of a percentage point. Christians deny the existence of 999 gods, while I question the existence of 1000.
If you were really strongly against atheism, you would become a polytheist or a universalist. That way you could at least have numbers on your side.
It's really not in any religion's best interest to say that atheism is a religion. If atheism is a religion and atheism is wrong, then that means an entire religion could be wrong. Okay, so what religious people are saying is that an entire religion could be made up of delusional people. Agreed.
And, if atheism is a religion, then atheism deserves protection under freedom of religion. If it's okay to teach religious values in public schools, and atheism is a religion, then it's okay to teach atheistic values in public schools.
Just simple, basic logic, no faith required.