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It’s Monday….. Time for the Atties!!!!!

August 24, 2009

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After an action packed Attie week last week, we are back to the normal Monday routine. But, this Monday’s edition is anything but routine. Why? Because we have two winners!!!!

I love going on long car rides. I find them relaxing, a time to think and listen to music. I love looking at the beauty of creation. So, nothing fries my candy bars than to see a big, ugly, stupid, horrible looking billboard gouging the blue sky with it’s hideousness. I used to live in Missouri, and they almost passed an antibillboard law, which I gladly voted for.

So, I hate it when churches or other Christian groups waste their time and effort on these eyesores. There are so much more worthy things on which they could be spending their money. Like what? Oh, how about feeding the poor, buying clothes for the naked or providing job training for those who need it in this economy. That’s just off the top of my head. Somehow, I didn’t hear Jesus say, “They will know you are my followers by the huge, stupid billboards that mare my creation”. So, to all the Christian groups and churches, this Attie award is for you.

But wait, you have to share it! It seems the Atheists, for all their claims to be brighter than Christians, have followed us into this absurd stupidity, spending money to tell people to smile, there is probably no god. Certainly, not all that offensive, but then again, most of the Christian ones aren’t that offensive either.

What gets me about the atheist billboards is pretty much similiar to the Christians use of them. Isn’t there something you can better spend your money on? I mean, I know you are trying to make other atheists comfortable about coming out. A worthy goal.

But, can’t you think of a better use of the money? Aren’t you supposed to be smarter than the rest of us? I think the “brights” just went dim on this one.

So, billboard groups, here are your Atties.

Oh, and St. Thomas, release a whole pack of hounds…….

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12 Comments leave one →
  1. Paul Bell permalink
    August 24, 2009 11:14 am

    I would have to agree the atheist billboards are unnecessary here in the UK, and the money could be better spent , as there is no balance to be redressed, as we have few if any religious adverts.

    In USA, however, as I saw when there , there is so much religious advertising , it is not unreasonable to have a little balance.

    However, in an ideal world if everyone could give up ALL such adverts , and spend the money on causes such as those you suggest that would be best.
    So I partially support your nomination.

  2. Richard Eis permalink
    August 24, 2009 11:28 am

    – Arenโ€™t you supposed to be smarter than the rest of us?-

    um, not really. We just like you to think that. It appears to be working :p

    The smile and be happy one was kinda pointless until the fundies complained about it, thus showing their hypocrisy.

  3. thomas2026 permalink*
    August 24, 2009 11:53 am

    Richard,
    Ha! I always suspected. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Yeah, I keep telling Christians to shut up about the atheist billboards. Sigh.

  4. thomas2026 permalink*
    August 24, 2009 11:54 am

    Yeah, Paul, that’s my whole argument. I think all of the cursed things should be gone. How I wish Missouri had passed that law! It actually came pretty close, too.

  5. Johann permalink
    August 24, 2009 1:31 pm

    Isnโ€™t there something you can better spend your money on?

    Depends on what you’re trying to accomplish.

    If your immediate goal is to replant forests, feed the hungry or shelter the homeless, then I agree – these ads are completely worthless.

    If, however, you’re trying to attract more members and give a PR boost to one of the most despised minorities in this country, they have succeeded beyond my most optimistic expectations.

    I can’t remember the last time we got this kind of nationwide exposure for anything besides lawsuits and the traditional annual hit pieces about the “war on Christmas”. These ads, by contrast, present a positive message that does not challenge any religious beliefs. One effect of this is that when the fundamentalists attack us for these ads, moderate Christians now react not with “rah, rah, brothers in Christ” but with “…I don’t know you people…”. Religious people are sympathizing with us. It’s an interesting and new experience.

    Reporters actually try to get our side of the story now when talking about us. The Office of Dismantling the First Amendment Faith-Based and Community Initiatives is making noises about getting us involved where only religious organizations were welcome before. It’s conceivable that, within a decade, our support might stop being political poison and actually start carrying some weight. A year ago, one of these billboards was taken down ten miles from where I live with no warning and not even the basic courtesy of an explanation; things have changed since then.

    And, as perhaps the clearest sign that the ads are working, some of the groups that ran them have more than doubled their numbers.

    I agree with you that billboard ads in general are unsightly and annoying. ๐Ÿ™‚ But as for the wisdom of using them to increase awareness of atheism, Churchill’s joke about democracy comes to mind – it’s the worst way to do it, except for all those others we’ve tried so far.

  6. Johann permalink
    August 24, 2009 2:04 pm

    …huh. So, looking back over that, I realize I was thinking about the combined effect of the billboards and the bus ads, without really realizing it at the time. The basic point is still the same, but I clearly need to start getting more sleep. =P

    Oh, and congratulations on 20000 hits. ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. thomas2026 permalink*
    August 24, 2009 2:20 pm

    Thanks Johann! It’s pretty crazy. I keep waiting for it to slow down and it did some yesterday. Of course, I didn’t post anything until late afternoon. So, at least people are paying attention.

  8. AdamK permalink
    August 24, 2009 2:26 pm

    If only those damn atheists and the wrong-sort-of-christians would shut up, the companies that own the billboards would go out of business, someone would take down the billboards, and we could enjoy the scenery!

  9. August 24, 2009 6:24 pm

    Off topic: in the comments box (left sidebar) my comments are linking back to my blog rather than to the comment. Am I doing it wrong???

  10. Matt permalink
    August 24, 2009 6:39 pm

    Clicking on your name or avatar will take you to your blog. If you click on the name of the post, it is a separate link and will take you to your comment.

  11. August 24, 2009 8:00 pm

    I’m one of the atheist-types who’s been drawn here recently to see what you have to say.

    I must admit, my initial reaction to this post was a bit indignant. “Hey, atheist groups are just trying to let people know they exist.” But then I gave this a little thought.

    Near where I’m working, a Christian group was out on the street corner handing out pamphlets and offering some kind of prayer service. In fact, they appeared to be doing this all week, a good 40 hours. My thoughts were that this seemed like a terrible waste of time. I thought that I would be much more impressed if they were spending that time and humanpower doing something productive (cleaning up litter, giving directions, anything really…) and simply wearing T-shirts which said something like “I am inspired by Jesus.”

    Well, I suppose the same argument could be applied to the atheist billboards. Maybe there are better methods which do some good and create a more favorable impression at the same time. Taking part in the “adopt a highway” program might be one example.

    Even the bus ads are a smarter choice, because 1) The buses are already there, you’re not blocking out part of the sky or environment, and 2) the ads support public transportation, which potentially helps the environment and keeps the cost down for those who use it.

  12. thomas2026 permalink*
    August 24, 2009 9:12 pm

    MP,
    Welcome! Right on with your last paragraph. That’s kind of my whole point. The bus ads are good, as there are already buses. It’s the billboards I can’t stand. At a church I used to pastor, someone suggested that we get a billboard. Needless to say, we didn’t do it. ๐Ÿ™‚

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