Just how aggressive and "in your face" should atheists be? Even the relatively moderate amount of assertiveness shown thus far has led to accusations of militancy, violence, and fundamentalism. This is despite the fact that atheists are far less aggressive than either religious groups have traditionally been or most issue-advocacy groups tend to be. More "in your face" tactics could bring more negative press, but less will probably result in the same, wouldn't it?
The sad fact is, atheists were not getting positive press and love from the general public before the so-called "new atheists" and their more assertive tactics appeared. Being less assertive and more submissive is no way to promote change and there's absolutely no reason to think that it would make the situation for atheists in America any better.
This is surely why all those who insist that atheists need to be less assertive never even try to offer any empirical evidence that a change in tactics would have positive benefits. It's not a reality-based position or suggestion -- it's ideological, i.e. it stems from their ideological goals and furthers their ideological goals. Since their ideology doesn't involve strengthening secularism or improving the situation for atheists, we have to conclude that their suggestions are aimed at undermining what atheists are trying to do, not help atheists.
So if being less "in your face" isn't an option, does this mean that being more assertive or even aggressive is a good idea? Perhaps. We certainly need something to combat the constant presumption of religion and theism in popular culture. At what point does more legitimate assertiveness cross a line into being inappropriate, though?