Of course they can. They can be good, smart, and caring just like religious believers can be rascals. The opposite is true. The difference isn't that atheists are idiots. Or that their arguments alone are absurd. Or that religious apologists are always shaming Einstein whenever they speak. As I've said before, right and left, religious and secular all have their bad apples. But the difference is, those on the right/religious/traditional who are bad apples are skinned by the media, and usually confined to living in the back hills of Montana surrounded by barbed wire and animal skins. Occasionally they're trotted out by journalists as a sort of 'see, look at the loony hatemongers that are typical religious types.' Those who say the equivalent hateful, bigoted idiocy on the secular Left? Well, media darlings, entertainment stars, esteemed academics in prestigious institutions of higher learning, and, well, you get the point.
Here, Mark Shea shows that sometimes the idiocy gets so bad even other atheists have to step out and correct it. The shame of it is, this idiocy is an accepted Super-Narrative of our age, even though there is overwhelming evidence to refute it.