Anyway, I wasn't looking for it, but they had a display of atheist literature - I noticed a couple of Dawkin's books...Sam Harris, that sort of thing... But there was one book there that I've wanted since I first saw it in the Second Renaissance catalog back in the late '90s: George H. Smith's Atheism: The Case Against God. [Oh, Heck! Here's the whole first chapter!]
So let's get right to the point (last four paragraphs of section VII):
Religion has had the disastrous effect of placing vitally important concepts, such as morality, happiness and love, in a supernatural realm inaccessible to man's mind and knowledge. Morality and religion have become so intertwined that many people cannot conceive of ethics divorced from god, even in principle -- which leads to the assumption that the atheist is out to destroy values.
Atheism, however, is not the destruction of morality; it is the destruction of supernatural morality. Likewise, atheism is not the destruction of happiness and love; it is the destruction of the idea that happiness and love can be achieved only in another world. Atheism brings these ideas down to earth, within the reach of man's mind. What he does with them after this point is a matter of choice. If he discards them in favor of pessimism and nihilism, the responsibility lies with him, not with atheism.
By severing any possible appeal to the supernatural -- which, in terms of human knowledge, means the unknowable -- atheism demands that issues be dealt with through reason and human understanding; they cannot be sloughed-off onto a mysterious god.
If atheism is correct, man is alone. There is no god to think for him, to watch out for him, to guarantee his happiness. These are the sole responsibility of man. If man wants knowledge, he must think for himself. If man wants success, he must work. If man wants happiness, he must strive to achieve it. Some men consider a godless world to be a terrifying prospect; others experience it as a refreshing, exhilarating challenge. How a person will react to atheism depends only on himself -- and the extent to which he is willing to assume responsibility for his own choices and actions.