On another discussion a member claimed that "secularism can be pretty opressive for true believers". There were some good responses but it off topic.
The claim is problematic because it assumes "true believers" have an absolute truth that has an authority over all people and all governance. I suggest the the problem is 'true belief" in an absolute sense, given the believers are fallible thinkers.
History answers the questions.
The inquisition, witch burnings, book burnings (Savonarolla, Bonfire of the Vanities), Puritanism (avoidance of dancing, song, joy, and Spartan belief that idle hands are tools of the devil), all show harsh rule by theists.
But this is off topic. The topic is the reverse....are secular people harsh to theists?
Some secular people (and some theists) refuse to allow schools to have group prayers led by a particular religion, in which everyone is required to attend. You could understand how upsetting that would be if they all had to pray to Satan. The Constitution requires a separation of church and state so that all religions can coexist peacefully..
Separation of Church and State hails back to England, around the middle of the 1500's
when King Henry VIII divorced his first wife, Catherine of Aragon, and found that the power of the king was limited by the power of the church, which balked at his divorce. Then King Henry VIII founded his own religion (Anglican...which means the church of England) and he wanted to be the leader of the church, over the loud protestations of his Privy Council and Lord Protector, Saint Sir Thomas Moore. Moore was beatified then sainted in 2011 for giving his life to defend the Catholic religion. Henry had threatened to behead him if he interfered (which he did).
Following the creation of the Anglican religion, bloody Mary
(dau of Henry, and queen of England) chopped off the heads (in a very Kind Konservative Kristian way, of course) of over 150 Anglican pastors for refusing to don the robes of Catholic priests.
Back and forth the power struggle continued. Whoever was in power made a bloody coup against the opposite religion. Until....King Charles II was forced to sign the "Great Petition" of the Excusionary Act.
That excluded catholics from ever ascending the throne (no Catholic kings). Yet, when Charles II died, he appointed his Catholic brother, James II, to the throne (igniting the Monmouth Rebellion
, to put the illegitimate, yet recognized, son, James Scott, Duke of Monmouth, onto the throne. The ill-fated rebellion resulted in drawing and quartering many people (including the Earl of Argyle of Scotland, and the Duke of Monmouth, himself). The surviving rebels mounted another rebellion (Glorious Rebellion) to put King William of Orange on the throne (with his wife, as queen...Mary, dau of James II).
What fell out of all of these English rebellions was the abiding love of freedom of religion....hence this is one of the freedoms of the United States.
What appears harsh to theists is nothing more than allowing all religions to practice their religions in private, while allowing schools to teach science.
It could be argued that evolution is a belief, not a proven fact. Yet, DNA does prove evolution.
is another source of friction between theists and non-believers. It boils down to an understanding of when life begins (at inception or brain activity).
Very few want to abort live babies
, though current laws require doctors to keep a fetus alive if is aborted alive (and that could be with brain damage, blindness, or a host of other debilitating problems).