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Atheist group targets Muslims, Jews with ‘myth’ billboards in Arabic and Hebrew
The American Atheists' president acknowledges that the pair of new billboards will likely cause a stir.
March 1st, 2012
05:00 AM ET

Atheist group targets Muslims, Jews with ‘myth’ billboards in Arabic and Hebrew

By Dan Merica, CNN

(CNN) – The billboard wars between atheists and believers have raged for years now, especially around New York City, and a national atheist group is poised to take the battle a step further with billboards in Muslim and Jewish enclaves bearing messages in Arabic and Hebrew.

American Atheists, a national organization, will unveil the billboards Monday on Broadway in heavily Muslim Paterson, New Jersey and in a heavily Jewish Brooklyn neighborhood, immediately after the Williamsburg Bridge.

“You know it’s a myth … and you have a choice,” the billboards say. The Patterson version is in English and Arabic, and the Brooklyn one in English and Hebrew. To the right of the text on the Arabic sign is the word for God, Allah. To the right of the text on the Hebrew sign is the word for God, Yahweh.

Dave Silverman, the president of American Atheists, said the signs are intended to reach atheists in the Muslim and Jewish enclaves who may feel isolated because they are surrounded by believers.

“Those communities are designed to keep atheists in the ranks,” he says. “If there are atheists in those communities, we are reaching out to them. We are letting them know that we see them, we acknowledge them and they don't have to live that way if they don’t want to.”

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

Silverman says the signs advertise the American Atheists’ upcoming convention and an atheist rally, called the Reason Rally, in Washington next month.

Atheists have long pointed to surveys that suggest atheists and agnostics make up between 3% and 4% of the U.S. population. That number increases when Americans unaffiliated with any religion are included. The Pew Center’s U.S. Religious Landscape Survey found that 16% are unaffiliated, though only a fraction of those are avowed atheists and agnostics.

Silverman acknowledges that the pair of new billboards will likely cause a stir.

“People are going to be upset,” he says. “That is not our concern.”

“We are not trying to inflame anything,” he continued. “We are trying to advertise our existence to atheist in those communities. The objective is not to inflame but rather to advertise the atheist movement in the Muslim and Jewish community.”

The billboards will be up for one month and cost American Atheists, based in New Jersey, less than $15,000 each, according to Silverman.

Mohamed Elfilali, executive director of the Islamic Center of Passaic County, laughed when he learned the Arabic billboard would go up in the same town as his office. He says he’s surprised that someone is spending money on such a sign.

“It is not the first and won’t be the last time people have said things about God or religion,” Elfilali says. “I respect people’s opinion about God; obviously they are entitled to it. I don’t think God is a myth, but that doesn’t exclude people to have a different opinion.”

But Elfilali bemoaned the billboards as another example of a hyper-polarized world.

“Sadly, there is a need to polarize society as opposed to build bridges,” he says. “That is the century that we live in. It is very polarized, very politicized.”

The Brooklyn billboard is likely to raise eyebrows among Jews, in part because Orthodox Jews don't write out the name of God, as the billboard does.

“It is an emotional word, there will be an emotional response," said Rabbi Kenneth Brander, dean of Yeshiva University's Center for the Jewish Future. "People will look at it in a bizarre way. People won’t understand why someone needed to write that out.”

To get around the prohibition, Jews usually use only one Hebrew letter in place of the word. In the Torah scroll, though, the word is found and it is pronounced Adonai, which means “my master.”

Rabbi Serge Lippe of the Brooklyn Heights Synagogue was more dismissive than outraged about the billboards.

“The great thing about America is we are marketplace for ideas,” he says. “People put up awful, inappropriate billboards expressing their ideas and that is embraced.”

But Lippe acknowledged that there are a lot of agnostic and atheist Jews. A recent Gallup survey found 53% of Jews identified as nonreligious. Among American Jews, 17% identified as very religious and 30% identified as moderately religious.

“When you have two Jews in the room, you have three opinions,” joked Lippe.

American Atheists have used the word “myth” to describe religion and God on billboards before. Last November, the organization went up with a billboard immediately before the New Jersey entrance to the Lincoln tunnel that showed the three wise men heading to Bethlehem and stated “You KNOW it’s a Myth. This Season, Celebrate Reason.”

At the time, the American Atheists said the billboard was to encourage Atheists to come out of the closet with their beliefs and to dispel the myth that Christianity owns the solstice season.

The Christmas billboard led to a “counter punch” by the Catholic League, a New York-based Catholic advocacy group. The Catholic League put up a competing billboard that said, “You Know It's Real: This Season Celebrate Jesus."

Silverman says his group’s billboard campaigns will continue long into the future.

“There will be more billboards,” Silverman says. “We are not going to be limiting to Muslims and Jews, we are going to be putting up multiple billboards in multiple communities in order to get atheists to come out of the closet.”

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Atheism • Islam • Judaism • New York • United States

soundoff (5,946 Responses)
  1. Steve

    I think these billboards should be plastered around the southern part of the U.S.. There's no difference between one nutty religion and another. With fundamentalist christians being some of the most hypocritical of all! They all want to tell us how to live our lives based on books written thousands of years ago by humans! Go figure. Bunch of idiots.

    March 1, 2012 at 2:51 pm |
    • ski2xs

      Okay. . . so then. . .your problem is with christianity, rigth? No problems with Sharia law or anything?

      March 1, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
    • 3N1Amen

      Steve...no one, no one including Christians are perfect. Stop following 'man' and take up following the Perfect One, Jesus Christ.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
  2. GS

    It's interesting how atheists are always crying about having religion shoved in their faces. Here we see hypocrisy at its best.

    March 1, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
    • momoya

      Your mockery is based on the idea that we stooped down to your level? Wow. You must be so proud.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
    • ski2xs

      Actually it would seem in this case to be based on observation. . . 🙂

      March 1, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
    • momoya

      And the observation is what I was referring to. Use logic much?

      March 1, 2012 at 2:56 pm |
    • sam

      It's about time someone shoved back.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:56 pm |
  3. Nah

    heroic: "Atheism is not a belief. It is the absence of a belief."

    You're not very intelligent, eh?

    Atheism is, by definition and in practice, not the mere "absence" of a belief. Why? Because they put forward and believe one fundamental principle: that a god does not exist. And when they assert that principle dogmatically, they become fundamentalists. Just like the religious people they hate.

    Try again?

    March 1, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
    • momoya

      You must have a problem in comprehension. Bald is not a hair color.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
    • ski2xs

      Belief that there isn't a deity isn't a non-belief. . . . being naive isn't a field of study 🙂

      March 1, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
    • Nah

      mom: "You must have a problem in comprehension. Bald is not a hair color."

      Sorry, but the two aren't analogous.

      Being "bald" is not a hair color because the person who is bald "has no hair". "Baldness" refers to a different object than "hair color".

      Atheism, on the other hands, is a belief. And that belief holds the same object as religious belief: a god.

      Hence, atheism can be a religion because it 1) has a belief, 2) puts that belief forth dogmatically, and 3) the belief centers around a religious figure: a god.

      Try thinking next time. You might save yourself some embarrassment.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
    • Mulehead

      Nah – "Atheism, on the other hands, is a belief. And that belief holds the same object as religious belief: a god."

      Hence, atheism can be a religion because it 1) has a belief, 2) puts that belief forth dogmatically, and 3) the belief centers around a religious figure: a god.

      Did you actually read what you wrote – Atheists don't believe in god...so your statement is false.

      To quote yourself: "Try thinking next time. You might save yourself some embarrassment."

      March 1, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
    • TheSchmaltz

      [Being "bald" is not a hair color because the person who is bald "has no hair".]

      and I have no God. QED.

      March 1, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
    • BubbaJones

      You're making circular arguments, and you're also misusing the term "belief", applying to the same meaning as "faith".

      One can have a political "belief", like the appropriateness of progressive taxation. This is completely different than a matter of "faith".

      Religion is 100% a matter of faith, not belief.

      Atheists refuse to accept the potential existence of any kind of deity simply based on the faith of the presenter. Atheists will accept the potential existence of black holes since they can be empirically proven to exist, even though they are directly unobservable.

      "Radical" atheism could be seen in the same light as religious evangelism, but they are conceptually polar opposites. One demands logic and proof to support a claim, the other needs none and makes significant efforts to dismiss the requirement.

      March 1, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  4. Mr. Reality

    Many years ago I was on a trip when I thought I seen God. Then I realized I was hallucinating when I snapped out of it and came back to reality.

    That Purple Micro-Dot was good stuff..............

    March 1, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
  5. wisdom4u2

    IDIOTS!! Well, now every nation knows why America was knocked off it's pedestal. I pray they don't think all Americans are as dumb as these clowns? To put those signs up in the neighborhoods, where people clearly love and believe in their faith, is just asking for trouble. Where's that Judge at who told that atheist to ph u ck off? Maybe they can get him to forbid the placing of those signs….after all, why should they be allowed to put up ‘graphic images’ of pure ignorance at it’s best?!!

    March 1, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
    • 0G-No gods, ghosts or goblins

      So, you want to tear up the 1st Amendment? Which part(s) – the bit about freedome of speech or the part about freedom of religion or both? Oh, you only want to shut up the people who do not agree with you? The people who only ask that you keep your god(s) out of government – the government you want to use to shut them up. Not too hypocritical are you?

      March 1, 2012 at 3:13 pm |
  6. JimmyNewton

    Another question: Do atheist believe in forgiveness along the lines of what is taught in Christianity and other religions?

    March 1, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Hell no.

      We believe in REAL moral virtue.

      Not some bigoted book or fairy tales used to subjugate people for centuries

      March 1, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
    • momoya

      It depends on the atheist. Atheists simply agree that there is not a good reason to believe in any god. Atheism is not a religion with set beliefs–just one shared nonbelief.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:51 pm |
    • ski2xs

      No. . .it is a belief that there is no deity or 'God'. . .it's not a 'non-belief' That's a poor attempt by your ego simply wanting to keep itself from being labeled in the same group as you label believers.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
    • Mick

      Forgiveness is a meaningless world in the godless world. There is no right or wrong and therefore nothing to forgive.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
    • Nah

      mom: "It depends on the atheist. Atheists simply agree that there is not a good reason to believe in any god. Atheism is not a religion with set beliefs–just one shared nonbelief."

      Brilliant contradiction. Atheists have no beliefs, they just believe a god doesn't exist.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
    • 0G-No gods, ghosts or goblins

      Mick, you are full of shit!! The belief that there are no gods says nothing about what is right or wrong. Go check out the facts on US prison populations – you will find that atheists are way under represented. The prisons are filled with hypocritical believers.

      March 1, 2012 at 3:16 pm |
    • Adam

      We don't need the threat of eternal damnation as a reason to be decent human beings.

      March 1, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
  7. 3N1Amen

    See? God is love. These atheists must deep down somewhere inside know love because God created them...they love enough to love on their own...the other atheists. So you see? There truly is God. I'm so glad that you care and love. It shows God's handiwork through you.

    March 1, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
    • William Demuth

      My parents created me, and they didn't even pretend to love each other.

      So do you REALLY think I can buy the nonesense you espouse?

      March 1, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
    • Matthew

      BEER is PROOF that God exists and wants us to be HAPPY
      ~Benjamin Franklin circa 1770's

      March 1, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
    • 3N1Amen

      God planned you...sounds like your parents didn't. God can heal your broken heart. He did not say life here on earth was going to perfect. Remember Adam & Eve? It's not a fairy tale. Their sons even killed each other. God can heal people...their minds, families, etc. Your parents most likely do not have God in their lives/hearts. God is love. Know Him and seek Him in your life...and He will show you true love. Not the unlove that you have been shown. We cannot pick our parents. I'm sorry that that has happened and God does care about you. Please seek Him with all within you. He cares and so do I. God bless you.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
  8. Salero 21

    God don't just exist, God IS!

    .

    March 1, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
    • 3N1Amen

      Amen! The First and the Last..Alpha and Omega...Beginning and the End.

      EVERY tongue including atheist's tongues will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord!!!! EVERY knee will bow including all the atheists! Come Jesus Come!!!

      March 1, 2012 at 2:51 pm |
    • sam

      These kneejerk responses are kind of hilarious.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
    • Salero 21

      That is right 3N1Amen.

      We in Free and willing Adoration, they in total and abject humiliation.

      March 1, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
  9. Colin

    One DOES NOT have to believe in the supernatural in order to be moral and a belief in one or more of the many gods in vogue today DOES NOT make one moral. Falsely linking morality to a particular religion or to some political or military ideology is a time-tested “three card trick” uses to stop people from asking the hard questions which might lead to an abandonment of the relevant faith.

    According to a recent Gallup poll, the ten most religious states in the USA are, in order starting with the most religious; Mississippi, Alabama, South Carolina, Tennessee, Louisiana, Arkansas, Georgia, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Kentucky and Texas. Of these, every single one except Kentucky is regularly rated below or well below the national average in mathematical and scientific education. They are also among the poorest and most corrupt. The ten least religious, according to the same poll, are Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts, Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Rhode Island, Nevada, and Connecticut.

    The same is true internationally, with a recent Gallup poll indicating that Egypt, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Congo, Sierra Leone, Malawi, Senegal, Djibouti and Morocco are the most religious countries in the World. Think about how poor and corrupt they are. There is a clear and recognized correlation between religiosity and corruption. It is not strong, but it is there. The least corrupt countries also tend to correlate have the largest number of atheists and agnostics. But correlation does not necessarily equal causation and I do not venture as far as to say that religion causes corruption.

    More tellingly, Christians make up about 80% of the American population and about 80% of its prison population. Muslims make up about 2% of the US population, but about 7% of the prison population. However, atheists make up about 15% of the American population but only 0.2% of the prison population.

    To quote some more statistics from the above cited article;

    “In "The New Criminology", Max D. Schlapp and Edward E. Smith say that two generations of statisticians found that the ratio of convicts without religious training is about 1/10 of 1%. W. T. Root, professor of psychology at the University of Pittsburgh, examined 1,916 prisoners and said "Indifference to religion, due to thought, strengthens character," adding that Unitarians, Agnostics, Atheists and Free-Thinkers are absent from penitentiaries or nearly so.

    During 10 years in Sing-Sing, those executed for murder were 65% Catholics, 26% Protestants, 6% Hebrew, 2% Pagan, and less than 1/3 of 1% non-religious. Steiner and Swancara surveyed Canadian prisons and found 1,294 Catholics, 435 Anglicans, 241 Methodists, 135 Baptists, and 1 Unitarian.

    In Joliet Prison, there were 2,888 Catholics, 1,020 Baptists, 617 Methodists and 0 atheists. Michigan had 82,000 Baptists and 83,000 Jews in their state population. But in the prisons, there were 22 times as many Baptists as Jews, and 18 times as many Methodists as Jews. In Sing-Sing, there were 1,553 total inmates with 855 of them Catholics (over half), 518 Protestants, 177 Jews and 8 non-religious.”

    Ever heard of an evolutionary biologist or secular humanist or atheist running into a church with a bomb screaming "Darwin Al Akbah, Darwin Al Akbah".

    March 1, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
    • Bobby Jones

      you sir are 100% correct

      March 1, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
    • Nah

      colin: "One DOES NOT have to believe in the supernatural in order to be moral and a belief in one or more of the many gods in vogue today DOES NOT make one moral."

      Good job at not understanding the issue.

      The question isn't whether atheists "can" be moral, the question is whether they have a reason to be.

      Because the atheist's world is totally devoid of objective moral laws, atheists have no reason to be moral. After all, are moral laws merely floating around the universe? And if so, who's going to enforce them?

      All morality boils down to an atheist's subjective wants and desires.

      Hence, an atheist who does "good" does "good" for no reason at all. That is, unless doing good makes him feel happiness or pleasure. And so if doing good makes him feel good, he ought to do it. But if doing wrong makes him feel good, he has no reason not to do it at all.

      Try to think a little harder next time.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
    • Nah

      colin: "There is a clear and recognized correlation between religiosity and corruption."

      Brilliant fallacy.

      You may as well say there's a correlation between being black and the a criminal. Are blacks therefore inherently criminal? Is there something "wrong" with being black?

      Your argument boils down to a thinly veiled ad hominem.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
    • Colin

      Nah, I was responding collectively to the numerous assertions on the blog by the believers in the varios sky-fairies that atheists are somehow immoral. Try to think next time before you post.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
    • Colin

      Did you not read where I said; "however correlation does not equal causation and I do not venture so far as to say religion causes corruption." Please argue the points I make, not the points you wish I would make.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
    • Nah

      colin: "Nah, I was responding collectively to the numerous assertions on the blog by the believers in the varios sky-fairies that atheists are somehow immoral. Try to think next time before you post."

      Perhaps you should try comprehending your own posts. You said quite clearly that you do not need to be religious to be moral. And yet that mistakes the issue entirely.

      When people assert that atheism is immoral they really mean it's amoral: no morality exists, and the atheist has no reason to do good except if doing good brings him pleasure.

      And because his own pleasure is the standard by which he judges his actions, morality for him boils down to a set of simple, selfish maxims.

      Try again?

      March 1, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
    • Nah

      colin: "Did you not read where I said; "however correlation does not equal causation and I do not venture so far as to say religion causes corruption." Please argue the points I make, not the points you wish I would make."

      Please. A veiled attempt at bringing neutrality into your post.

      What purpose did your quotations serve (and, more importantly, you last line) except to try to infer that religion is evil, or causes evil? If correlation is not causation - you're right - then your entire post was a non-sequitur and utterly meaningless.

      March 1, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
    • JR

      You confuse religious morality with religious people. Religious morality exists on its own. Imperfect humans (which we all are) have a range of different reasons and motives for counting themselves among religious people, not all of them pure.

      March 1, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
    • Mulehead

      Score for this round....Colin 3, Nah 0

      Collin – here's a great article on Daniel Dennett's research into "the self-sustaining nature of cultural phenomena"

      "Dennett suggests that many cultural organisms rely for their vitality on a control of information. It's important, he suggests, that participants - and outsiders, especially - don't know too much about what is really going on: This is obvious enough in the case of a Ponzi scheme (another of Dennett's sociological bacteria), which relies on dupes continuing to pay into the system. For such a scam to work, "networks of trust" must be maintained and exploited. But what about religion? Dennett notes that not all professional clergy whole-heartedly believe the doctrines that they are supposed to promulgate. Some may have lost their faith entirely: he estimates, based on research he has conducted along with Linda LaScola, that about one in five priests or pastors fall into this category. Some lose their beliefs in theological college, when they are exposed for the first time to the work of Biblical scholars and sophisticated theologians. Yet they continue to preach and draw their stipends."

      http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/nelson-jones/2011/12/dennett-religion-social-faith

      March 1, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
    • 0G-No gods, ghosts or goblins

      Nah, you too are full of shit!

      Re: "When people assert that atheism is immoral they really mean it's amoral: no morality exists, and the atheist has no reason to do good except if doing good brings him pleasure.

      And because his own pleasure is the standard by which he judges his actions, morality for him boils down to a set of simple, selfish maxims."

      You fail to understand that many people operate with the well being of others in mind. They realize it benefits society as a whole to live within a set of generally accepted rules (laws). No god(s) required!

      But do keep on making up whatever you need to justify your belief in some mystical god for which noone has presented a single bit of factual, objective, verifiable or independent evidence.

      March 1, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
    • Salero 21

      So sorry to break your bubble but Polls can be Custom Made and Statistics can and are Extremely easy to Manipulate. That's why they ususally say that there is a – + 3 to 4 % of Error. Hardly ever can they take a total 100% Sample in Polls, so you will have a hard time proving them [Statistics] to be an Exact Science in this case and with that Sample.

      March 1, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
    • Salero 21

      ...
      "Ever heard of an evolutionary biologist or secular humanist or atheist running into a church with a bomb screaming "Darwin Al Akbah, Darwin Al Akbah"."'

      No but I know of Mao, Stalin, Pol Pot, Castro, Ceacesku and many others. So, I don't think History and Statistics are on the side of atheists.

      March 1, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "No but I know of Mao, Stalin, Pol Pot, Castro, Ceacesku and many others. So, I don't think History and Statistics are on the side of atheists."

      480 million people have been killed because of religion, or do you like to babble without really know the facts.

      March 1, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
  10. wimsy

    Why doesn't your imaginary friend prevent churches from burning down? Does fire have free will? How about tornadoes?

    March 1, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
  11. Mack

    Billboards are great. People have to know that it is OK to be atheist and that there are many people like them. Even though I go to church sometimes I do not believe in god anymore. Understanding that the whole god thing is just a fairy tale is pretty difficult. Understanding that there may not be any afterlife after all is also not easy. I know that if I die I am dead. There is nothing after that. It is hard to accept but I have practiced acceptance before. I already had to accept the facts that there is no Santa and no tooth fairy.

    March 1, 2012 at 2:47 pm |
  12. funny

    i think your god is lazy if he exists. i know, all the death, disease and hardships are the result of "god" giving man free will. and what a swell call that was. able to create the universe in his divine ability, but can't stop someone from drinking a six pack of mickey's and plowing into an innocent person killing them. guardrails have saved more lives than your god.

    your god so powerless that he can't stop, tornadoes, famine, disease, sadness and everything else in the world? i think you ought to consider electing a new one.

    March 1, 2012 at 2:47 pm |
    • William Demuth

      If Christ is omnipotent he is unworthy of worship.

      If Christ is not omnipotent, why call him God?

      March 1, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
  13. Atheose

    There's nothing wrong with religion by itself.

    The problem is when the religious use their religion as a reason to discriminate against gays, to take away the reproductive rights of women, and to try to teach creationism in the science classroom.

    Religions that keep to themselves aren't a problem. Nobody goes around telling the Amish that they're wrong and that they should use electricity, but then again the Amish aren't trying to pass laws that ban it.

    March 1, 2012 at 2:47 pm |
    • Nah

      atheose: "The problem is when the religious use their religion as a reason to discriminate against gays, to take away the reproductive rights of women, and to try to teach creationism in the science classroom."

      Brilliant strawmen.

      Deep thought is foreign to you, no?

      March 1, 2012 at 3:02 pm |
    • 0G-No gods, ghosts or goblins

      Nah, are you denying that religion has attempted (in fact currently is, with Rick Santorum being a great example) to accomplish the above (deny rights to some groups, deny reproductive rights, have creationism taught along side or in place of evolution)?

      March 1, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
  14. JR

    Ironic that in today's America we claim to be all-inclusive, but we're more concerned than ever about what others are doing. "I'm offended!" has become an excuse for everything, as long as you are in a special interest group. Slipping on ice on someone else's property is clearly their fault. Your kids not doing their homework is clearly the teacher's fault.

    As a guy, I ignore many women's perfume and fashion billboards every day, and as a Christian I can ignore this one.

    Welcome to America, take it all in, and accept your own risk and responsibility.

    March 1, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
    • QS

      Only, religious people honestly don't feel they have anything to accept in regards to responsibility.

      How do you tell somebody who thinks their belief, which is merely an opinion and not fact, that they should also be taking responsibility for the wrongs their religion does when they won't even bring themselves to acknowledge that their religion does anything wrong....or worse, that they actually agree with the wrongs their religion does.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
  15. Mr Everyman

    The Muslims and Jews and others can put up billboards inviting anyone who believes in kindness, forgiveness and, fairness as a Spirit that motivates them to worship with them. Keep it positive. It is great for the billboard business.

    March 1, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
  16. c

    The problem with Atheists is the fact that we do have a choice, they just dont like our choice.

    March 1, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
    • Sabina

      And you don't like ours.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
    • Adam

      We find the choice to lie to oneself and one's children about what we "know" about the physics and metaphysics of the universe to be inimical to human cooperation and civilization. The choice to murder someone or not is also a choice. But that there can be two opinions on the matter does not suggest that one opinion is WRONG.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
    • QS

      The probelm with religious people is that they actually believe this is simply about who chooses to believe in what, when in reality, the religion corporation today is responsible for much of the discrimination that still exists in our society...what religious people choose, is to not see that.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
  17. Tonette

    @DarkAxel. I'm a Christian and I totally agree with you.

    March 1, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
  18. Nathan

    What sucks about choosing to identify as Atheist must be that you have NO chance of ever being shown to be correct. The only two options are A) You were correct, but you nor anybody else ever finds that out for sure because you die at the instant when you could have hoped for confirmation, or B) You find out that you were wrong in a fairly laughable and spectacular way.

    March 1, 2012 at 2:44 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Huh?

      Many things, most especially time, will prove us correct.

      Your God shall go where all the previous Gods went, into a well deserved oblivion.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:47 pm |
    • Nathan

      William – you will be dead long before "time" proves you correct. Not sure how you think time is exactly your ally since it marches against you and if there is anything that has stood the test of time it is the concept of a God.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
    • QS

      Pascal's Wager again? When will you people understand that choosing to believe in any version of god because of "what if" is probably the worst reason you could ever think of to try to tell others that they should believe as you.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
    • MagFlare

      I'm not an atheist because I want others to see me proven correct. I'm an atheist because, given the evidence, there aren't any other satisfactory options.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
  19. Barowner

    Somewhat appropriate that the convention of atheists is held in Washington D.C.

    March 1, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
    • Nathan

      I wish it were truer than it is. Unfortunately some of our biggest religious nutcases and hypocrites roam the halls of congress.

      March 1, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
  20. Daniel

    It's about time a group besides Christians gets crap from the Atheists.

    March 1, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Be patient or we shall be forced to mock you further!

      March 1, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
    • Bobby Jones

      @william Demuth
      lol

      March 1, 2012 at 2:51 pm |
    • sam

      We shall say 'ni' again to you if you do not appease us!

      March 1, 2012 at 3:02 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.