Theism provides a great foundation for several questions that humans and science raises. Atheism and naturalism and materialism lack greatly in this regard. Just the fact we know that the mind exists is excruciatingly hard for the materialist to answer with just natural science. Religion in respect to theism does deserve some respect.
By all means keep your beliefs and traditions if you must, but you are not entitled to anything. I have the same free speech as your institution and if I choose to ridicule your beliefs and vice versa its a right we both have. Nothing is unquestionable and everything should be questioned. The idea that certain things are absolutes is an impediment to progress.
I really feel that no religion deserves respect, nor does any scientific theory. Everything is questionable, of course in the scientific sense questioning is only valid if it has proof, but it is all subject to question. That being said, I respect Unitarian Universalists, its a chill religion. And I think the term Atheist isn't correct. To truly believe in no god is irrational. The rational sentiment is "I cannot disprove god, but the lack of evidence shows to me that it is improbable". I think most atheists really fall under the label of a stronger agnostic. I know I do.
Religions are invented ideas invented by humans who did not know any other way to answer questions but to make up answers.
The brain needs answers, even bad ones, in order to go to sleep.
Human vertebrates, wandering around on a ball in space, make up answers so that they could get some sleep. They did not care if the answers were good or bad.
They were just tired and illiterate. None of that is sufficient to earn respect.
If you mean as likely as any other religion, then yes.
If you mean free from criticism and not allowed to be made fun of, then absolutely not.
Religion should not get respect if they don't deserve it, and I'd say they definitely don't deserve it. Looking at all the religions from an Atheistic perspective is the same as looking at greek mythology or any fable. It is just another story that people tell each other, except one is more influential and potentially dangerous than the other.
By respect, if you mean a status of absolute control over life without questioning, The answer is absolutely no. Religious myths should be given the same respect, that we give to fairy tales, because they are nothing but fairy tales. But teaching fairy tales, or religious myths, as absolute truth, is actually a fraud.