Dec 132012

I started seeing noise on Twitter about an atheist billboard in Times Square.

David Silverman, President of American Atheists stated, “We know that a large population of ‘Christians’ are actually atheists who feel trapped in their family’s religion. If you know god is a myth, you do not have to lie and call yourself ‘Christian’ in order to have a festive holiday season. You can be merry without the myth, and indeed, you should.”

Mr. Silverman continued, “We encourage people to be honest with themselves and their families this year. If you don’t believe in god, tell your family—honesty is the greatest gift, and they deserve it.”

Teresa MacBain, Communications Director and a former pastor stated, “The true beauty of the season—family, friends, and love—have nothing to do with the gods of yesteryear. Indeed, the season is far more enjoyable without the religious baggage of guilt and judgmentalism. Dump the myth and have a happy holiday season.”

“Dump the myth and have a happy holiday season.” Been there done that. Would much rather enjoy the gift of faith and ponder upon the wonders of the Incarnation. I was certainly happy as an atheist, but prefer both happiness and joy.

Billboards like this are theist bait designed to get attention and so this is effective at some level. I do wonder if there really are the masses of people hiding their non-belief? Seems to me that there is now more stigma associated with faith than in agnosticism and atheism. The fundamentalist and the bible thumper has plenty of stereotype attention. While I am sure there are some people who do hide their unbelief. Are they really just waiting for a billboard in Time Square for encouragement to come out? Plus as others have noted there is the odd irony of promoting Santa while saying Jesus is a myth. Maybe campaigns like this are to create a sense of community for atheists. We all seek a sense of community and desire encouragement for the like-minded.

As The Crescat noted, be honest. It’s just Christians you have issue with, not religion in general…. This fact has certainly been noted before that it is almost always Christianity that is aimed at and ridiculed. It would seem that atheism should be an equal opportunity ridiculer of religion. Still it makes sense that this is so in a Christian/post-Christian society and that this would be the target.

The more interesting question is why such campaigns and efforts by atheists are more like political campaigns and attack ad based. Where are the signs/bumper stickers/reaching out efforts promoting the positive joy of atheism. For a group that constantly talks about reason the efforts are largely mockery-based. If you had a positive atheist message on a bumper sticker what would it be? Even in the realm of car magnets atheists mock the Ichtus instead of advancing their own symbol.

When I tweeted something along these lines earlier I got a bunch of joyful replies from atheists on the positive aspects of unbelief. I mean by joyful use of the F-word and assumptions made not based on what I wrote. Apparently the thing to be avoided at all costs is guilt. The sign of a working conscience is now a defect. I found a rather odd way to avoid guilt, I try to avoid sin – fancy that.

  11 Responses to “Theist bait”

  1. You haven’t seen the positive atheist bumper stickers?

    I see them all the time, and that’s how I know we believers are outnumbered.

    I can understand why you don’t notice them. Christians, Buddhists, Wiccans, etc. all put up bumper stickers with symbols of what they believe in.

    But since atheists don’t believe in anything, their bumper stickers are invisible!

    Have you noticed how many bumpers only have invisible bumper stickers? We’re outnumbered, I’m telling you!

  2. (((Have you noticed how many bumpers only have invisible bumper stickers? We’re outnumbered, I’m telling you!)))

    Hey CatholicSkywalker! I thought that sinner vic was the only invisible comedian fool around here? Truth be known not every invisible atheist with a spiritual hammer see all Christian problems as rusty nails.

    I hear ya! Some of them think of U>S (usual sinners) as drunk chrirstian drivers if ya get my drift? 🙂

    Go Figure!


  3. It is difficult to design a corporate identity program for self-inflicted self-impoverishment.

  4. I encourage those who self-identify as Christian or any religion for social reasons alone to stop. That’s where my agreement with the American Atheists above ends, though.

  5. One has to wonder why honesty is the most important thing to them, afterall in summary for an atheist, there is no value. Secondly, why is love, family and friends confined to Christmas? Why is it to them a mere few days within a 365 day per year cycle that strikes the utmost importance? Catholics know why it’s important, atheists just seem as Mr. Miller suggests, shriek with discontent and malcontent towards Christians.

    God Bless.

  6. I’ve noticed that myself, there is no atheist outcry against Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, Pagans or Wiccans. Even the odious Salvage at least acknowledged people’s beliefs in other faiths. Yet it’s always Christians, and in particular Catholics & Fundies, that get the brunt of atheist anger.
    And will there ever be an honest atheist outcry against Muslims, in particular the kind who fly planes into buildings?

  7. I would like to see them take their message that “you don’t have to believe the myth to enjoy the holiday” to the Jews who keep complaining about the “imposition” of “Christian symbols” like, you know, evergreens and candy canes. Don’t they know that we are FORCING people to be merry?

  8. Atheists are full of joy, yes. The joy mail has been flowing in my inbox and comment box since last night.

  9. Christopher: Notice that they say that honesty is a great “gift”. From whom?
    They never seem to realize that all their moral and ethical values are stolen from theism.

  10. (((They never seem to realize that all their moral and ethical values are stolen from theism.)))

    Roberto, “I’M” sure you might agree that this Mass shooting which took place this morning in Connecticut is terrible for a Loving GOD to accept so please help U>S (usual sinners) to heal the broken hearted and especially Loving Lord come and bless the spiritual reality wombs where these Your Children originated.


  11. Avoiding sin as a means of avoiding guilt?
    What kind of a heretic are you?

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