home
RSS
First on CNN: Atheist group targets presidential candidates' faith with billboards
A billboard criticizing Christianity is going up in Charlotte, North Carolina, host city of the upcoming Democratic National Convention.
August 13th, 2012
10:03 AM ET

First on CNN: Atheist group targets presidential candidates' faith with billboards

By Dan Merica, CNN

Washington (CNN) - A prominent atheist group is using next month's Democratic National Convention to take aim at the presidential candidates' religion, putting up billboards targeting Mormonism and Christianity in Charlotte, North Carolina.

“Our political system is rife with religion and it depends too much on religion and not enough on substance," said David Silverman, president of American Atheists, sponsor of the ads.

"Religion is silly and religion has components that are inherently divisive. … There is no place for any of that in the political system,” he said.

The billboards go up Monday in Charlotte and will stay up for a month at a cost of roughly $15,000. The Democratic convention runs September 3-6.

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

The billboard targeting Christianity features an image of Jesus Christ on toast and this description of the faith: "Sadistic God; Useless Savior, 30,000+ Versions of ‘Truth,’ Promotes Hates, Calls it ‘Love.’ ”

The billboard targeting Mormonism lambastes - and, Mormons would say, distorts - specific Mormon doctrines: "God is a Space Alien, Baptizes Dead People, Big Money, Big Bigotry.”

The Mormon billboard features a man in white underwear, a reference to special Mormon garments.

Follow the CNN Belief Blog on Twitter

Both billboards feature the line "Atheism: Simply Reasonable."

American Atheists had wanted to put the anti-Mormon billboard in Tampa, Florida, to coincide with the Republican National Convention there later this month. Presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney is a Mormon. When no billboard company in the city would lease the group space for such a sign, Silverman said the organization decided to focus solely on the Democrats in Charlotte.

“Presidential conventions are for ideas, not ideology - platforms, not platitudes," Silverman said. "If a person believes stupid things, we have every right to question his or her judgment, and that directly impacts how the nonreligious voter votes.”

CNN Belief Blog: Atheist leader hopes to mobilize closeted nonbelievers

Some religious leaders said the billboards showed a misunderstanding of how faith works.

"That billboard makes the most common high-school error when it comes to atheism," wrote the Rev. James Martin, a Jesuit priest and author, in an e-mail to CNN. "It's not arguing against the existence of God, but against religion. The American Atheists need to go back to school on this one."

Martin also questioned the language used on the billboard: "And as for 'promoting hate' they're doing a bang-up job themselves with that billboard."

Terryl Givens, a Mormon professor at the University of Richmond, called American Atheists "petty and vindictive."

“If this example of adolescent silliness is what atheists mean by being reasonable, then neither Mormons nor other Christians have much to worry about," he said of the billboards. "When atheists organize to serve the poor and needy of the world, they will be taken more seriously."

CNN Belief Blog: Unbelieving preachers 'come out' as atheists

It's not the first time the American Atheists group has released in-your-face billboards. Earlier this year, the group put up two billboards in heavily Muslim and Jewish enclaves in New Jersey and New York bearing messages in Arabic and Hebrew.

“You know it’s a myth … and you have a choice,” the billboards said. At the time, Silverman said the signs were intended to reach atheists in Muslim and Jewish areas who may feel isolated because they are surrounded by believers.

In addition to the billboards, Silverman said his group plans to stage protests at both conventions.

- Dan Merica

Filed under: 2012 Election • Atheism • Barack Obama • Christianity • Mitt Romney • Mormonism • Politics

soundoff (7,477 Responses)
  1. Kalessin

    Wow...some atheists have went over the deep end. And they have a little cash to show that they have with a billboard.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      This is a very disappointing post.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
    • Confused face

      Kalessin, you don't write too good, does ya? Too much time in bible study, not enough on useful things like, you know, the rules of grammar and spelling.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
    • Kalessin

      In what way? The organization that put this billboard up offers nothing but generalizations that are in most cases out dated or factless.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
    • Pete

      Yes, there are some people with a different viewpoint than yours and they want to let people know about it. Truly amazing!

      August 13, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
    • Kalessin

      @Confused face- child..calm yourself. This isn't a college classroom. It's a comment board on cnn. Come to grips with reality.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
    • Kalessin's 4th Grade Teacher

      Yes, Tom, Tom, that self-proclaimed "educated" ppl say "have went" makes me want to tear my hair out!

      August 13, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
    • Kalessin

      @Pete- It is amazing. The viewpoint they give is as va gue, rude and factless as the one's they are trying to make fun of. Right?

      August 13, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
    • Confused face

      @Kalessin: "Come to grips with reality."

      Says the one who believes in the sky fairy. BWAAHAHHAHAAHAHAHAHHAHAHHA. Pot meet kettle.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      "out dated or factless."

      Perfect description of your religion.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
    • Kalessin

      K4GT- always nice to see the grammar gestapo are out in numbers today but still say nothing important.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
    • Kalessin

      Confused face- "Says the one who believes in the sky fairy."

      Hmmm, someone's reading comprehension is lacking in here. No one has declared any worship of "sky fairies"....except the atheists.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
    • Kalessin

      TheVocalAtheist- "Perfect description of your religion."

      What religion? Are you grasping for straws?

      August 13, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Kalessin, it just makes you look extremely stupid when you say "have went over the deep end."

      I don't care how casual the venue, the fact that you say this even in this sort of forum is telling. I'll bet you say it out loud in real life, too.

      Do you also say "Her and me went down the shore"?

      August 13, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
    • Kalessin

      @Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son- You guys are nuts.
      Lol...no, I can't recall ever saying it or even wanting to say anything like it. Of course though...I've never talked with the likes of you in real life either. I am sure various statements implying your insanity would come about.

      August 13, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
    • Kalessin

      Exiting the grammar gestpo's domain. The billbaord is va gue. In it's own way it admits there are many different groups of Christians and yet imply generalizations upon them all.
      Toast with Jesus on it? I don't recall too many Protestants getting all worked up over that. Of course, the atheists that created the billboard would want everyone to think that all Christians would bow down before it.

      August 13, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      What's "nuts" about it? Do you think "have went" is correct?

      Sorry you don't like being called on it, but if I didn't know better, I'd think you were an impostor.

      You're always on about literature and intelligence. You think others have no idea how to pronounce "Lycidas" or the origin of the name. Don't get your hair in a braid when someone makes fun of you for making a stupid error.

      August 13, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
    • Kalessin

      @Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son- You are nuts because of what you focus on and try to win debates by. No it is not correct. Good grief are you happy now? Of course that does nothing to the fact that this billboard is stupid.

      I don't mean this toward all atheists. I have no problem with them at all. But this billboard is trying to be insulting on purpose. Why is that ok?

      "You're always on about literature and intelligence. You think others have no idea how to pronounce "Lycidas" or the origin of the name."

      We live in the age of google. Only the lazy couldn't figure it out.

      "Don't get your hair in a braid when someone makes fun of you for making a stupid error."

      You twit...I don't care about the error. It doesn't matter in that you don't get anything out of it. The billboard is still a hypocritical piece of trash. It's sad that so many atheists on here seem to like it.

      August 13, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Anyone can Google. Yet you made the as sumption that everyone else is ignorant you are somehow on a loftier plane.

      And your protestations of not giving a sh!t bring to mind that phrase about protesting too much. Do you need to google its origin?

      I told you before that you come across as a supercilious, arrogant little twerp. If you don't like being corrected, then stop acting like your the one and only authority on every subject.

      August 13, 2012 at 2:24 pm |
    • Kalessin

      "Yet you made the as sumption that everyone else is ignorant you are somehow on a loftier plane."

      Incorrect. That is something you created out of thin air. I picked that username because I liked the poem. It was only when you tried to be clever that I implied your ignorance. Never did I imply everyone on here was ignorant.

      "And your protestations of not giving a sh!t bring to mind that phrase about protesting too much. Do you need to google its origin?"

      You ditz....who brought it up originally? Then the second time? Etc? It was you. I guess everyone should just ignore you instead of talking with you.

      "I told you before that you come across as a supercilious, arrogant little twerp."

      I try to mirror those on here. I guess I am successful in that.

      "If you don't like being corrected, then stop acting like your the one and only authority on every subject."

      So says the kettle who feels the need to be the grammar gestapo. You hypocrite.

      August 13, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
  2. coder jones

    Give it a few decades, another new religion, another new god will emerge to replace the values of the old ones.

    Religion is recycled to suit the times and needs of greed. Bigots need a reason to hate and religion is the first tool of choice.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • William Demuth

      The dogma changes, but it is ALWAYS a ponzi scheme demanding subservience from fools

      August 13, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
  3. Appmonger

    I've coudn't have said it better: “Our political system is rife with religion and it depends too much on religion and not enough on substance".

    Organize religions promotes hate which its people use as a tool to look down at the same people they see in the mirror. People are so busy judging others and think they are better then the rest of us. Which in reality who are they to judge?

    Religion has no business in politics and we can't seem to get it unglued. Our laws are driving by moral views of religion. Such a screwed up society we are.

    If there is such a god regardless of what ever religion you belong too. It's should be left to meetings it's maker once one passes and not be left to anyone on this earth to be it judge and jurry.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      Where do you get your views from if they are not driven by your beliefs?

      August 13, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
  4. Kaleem

    I'm a former Muslim from Pk, now an atheist – GO ATHEISM. All religions are lies. Why does American currency have the phrase "In God we trust"? Get rid of this BS.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      "IN God we Trust" is the acknowledgement that our rights and freedoms are descended upon us from our Creator and not from our government. It is likely to become a good thing to remember going forward.

      August 13, 2012 at 2:02 pm |
  5. Rational Thinker

    Hey folks, it's simple. Most monotheistic religious bodies are run like a BUSINESS and control their "customers" though fear (of the unknown) and absolute authority (scripture as interpreted by priests, ministers, etc.). As has been shown time and time again, when "church" interest conflicts with moral principle, moral principle is often set aside. The most recent example of this is the pedophile scandle in the Roman Catholic church, but there are numerous examples from other religious bodies.

    We as a species have to grow up and put childish thoughts aside. Nobody will save us from ourselves except us. Life is not a dress rehearsal. This is all we get and we must make the best use of our collective intellect and resources to make our little blue planet a better place upon which to live.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
    • Michael

      Thank you for rational thought. This country needs MUCH more rational thought.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
    • scott

      I follow your thinking. Question: does it represent atheism or egotheism? Your comment about "Nobody will save us from ourselves except us" sounds like we're being egotheistic... Or am I misunderstanding you? Thanks.

      August 13, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
  6. Pete

    Why would atheists not try to convert others? Is that not also the responsibility of Christians?

    August 13, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • Why Ditch Religion

      How do you convert to atheism? Is that like when you stop playing tennis you converted to being atennis?

      August 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • Mark from Middle River

      Cause Atheism is nothing but a Religion that is taking its cues from established Religions.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Sure Mark

      And baldness is a hair color.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      @Mark from Middle River

      You're such a fu*cking idiot, it's beyond disgusting.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
    • Pete

      Why Ditch Religion, I believe you have it right.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
    • Mark from Middle River

      To have hair or not to have hair is all dealing with a state of being on top of a head.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:36 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Vocal, you speak the truth.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Mark from Middle River

      Even you know that just stupid.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      If only he did.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      really guys you are going to make the a- argument.

      @WDR, yes if you being to believe that tennis is dangerous for you and that changes your beliefs about tennis then you are a-tennis... see your beliefs about tennis do not cease to exist, they are just converted to another belief.

      @Will curly is not a hair color either, nor is BMW... stop comparing apples to oranges. To not believe, and their is the key word, in God is still a belief system.

      August 13, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
    • SImran

      To not believe is also a belief system – Then I sure need tax exemption!

      August 13, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
  7. willfred

    you are all so full of it, it is incredible.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • bcarpe

      I liked this comment better when I misread it as "we are so full of it."
      Not as a reflection on the commenter's own beliefs, but as the human race as a whole. It's really sad how we'll twist anything we can get our hands on to get our own way...

      August 13, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
  8. Saved by Jesus

    Thanks atheists! I will count this a my Birthday present 🙂
    We Christians need a break. Now you can be the so-called "hate-mongers for a while."
    Whew-feels good when someone who sets out to insult you only draws your base closer together.
    FYI – no matter what – God still loves you!

    August 13, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • Bob

      Pointing objective facts about your religion, albeit in a somewhat sarcastic manner, is not 'hate'.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • bp

      "It is necessary for salvation for every human creature to be subject to the Roman Pontiff." – Pope Boniface VII

      August 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • William Demuth

      God Loves You?

      Isn't that what Priests say when they bugger little boys rear ends?

      Oh yeah, I almost forgot, they also say "If you tell anyone, mommy will burn in hell"

      Nice religion you have.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • cedar rapids

      "FYI – no matter what – God still loves you!"

      unless you die not believing in which case god will show his love for you by condeming you to an eternity of torment...in his mercy.

      what crap.,

      August 13, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
    • TX Red

      I love the "if you're intolerant of our intolerance then you're just as bad as we are" argument. Laughable at best.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • jimmer

      "God still loves you!"

      And Santa Claus still loves you too.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
    • DCBuck

      LOL! Exactly! Oh well, I'm just surprised that they had the time to come up with this, considering they must be busy running the many, many atheist soup kitchens, atheist hospitals, atheist schools in the developing world, atheist shelters for battered women, and on and on . . .

      August 13, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
    • Mulehead

      "God still loves you.....Please send me your address and I'll send you a vile of Miracle Spring Water to prove it! ... then hound you relentlessly to empty your bank accounts into my Porsche!"

      Let the Divine Transfers begin!

      August 13, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
  9. scott

    If I'm saying that I can't and won't believe in or comprehend someone or something identified as God – who is beyond my capacity to understand or willingness to submit myself to – and that ultimately I'm the final arbiter and authority of who's who and what's what, aren't I really saying that I'm my own God? More egotheism that atheism? I don't think atheism is even possible.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
    • Jesse

      the only person saying that is you

      August 13, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      Put on your thinking cap there scotty boy, it's really not that hard to figure it out.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • JeramieH

      Is it ego that you don't believe in the Tooth Fairy?

      August 13, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
    • scott

      If you want to worship the tooth fairy... Knock yourself out.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
    • scott

      Jesse and TheVocalAtheist, I think we're using different definitions for god... How are you defining the "theist" part of "atheist"?

      August 13, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
    • DCBuck

      @ Scott: I'd say it's the crystallization of the word "arrogance."

      August 13, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
    • scott

      DCBuck, interesting, though I'm not sure I understand what you mean. "Arrogance" meaning the idea of arrogance, or meaning that a person could be so "arrogrant" so as to proclaim themself as an ultimate authority?

      August 13, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
    • Jesse

      @scott
      I think we're using different definitions for god

      What definition are you using?

      August 13, 2012 at 2:33 pm |
    • scott

      Jesse, I'm guessing that you'd say "god" would be any so-called gods of the world's religions. If that's the "god" you're talking about, one that mankind has made and pursued, then we're using different definitions.

      August 13, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
  10. palintwit

    Just remember everybody... you can always take the trash (Sarah Palin) out of the trailer, but you can never take the trailer out of the trash. These are words to live by.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • Mark from Middle River

      So, is like when when neo-nazis speak about Obama and say that you can not take the ghetto out of the ne'gro?

      Why do you folks on the extremes always sound so much the same. You pull the name Palin out and you can insert anyone.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
    • jimmer

      "You pull the name Palin out and you can insert anyone"

      Only if they are stupid.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:47 pm |
    • Mark from Middle River

      ...and since the country and society is split and divided in various factions, for every person there are thousands who believe that they are stupid.

      Its tiring. Once my father heard me telling a Polish joke I over heard at school. He told me that I should tell such jokes because there is a good chance that a African American left the room that Polish joke instantly became a N'gr joke.

      August 13, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
  11. Goof for Them

    The masses would be wired and more insane without the pussgetti monster. It's prozac for the masses. Be wise-use the
    situation to declare the end of the world and have millions sent to your website.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
  12. 82ndAB

    I don't see atheism as any better than any religions. Look at the animosity in these comments. People hate people who believe differently.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
    • JamesW

      in the words of Metallica,,,,Sad but True

      August 13, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
    • No Truth, Just Claims

      Disagreement does not equal "hate"...

      Drama queen.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • Why Ditch Religion

      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NA53vCC_MIk&w=640&h=360]

      August 13, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      Those guys don't represent all atheists, just like Rush L. doesn't represent all conservatives.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      Atheism is not a religion.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • Mark from Middle River

      Yes it is 🙂

      August 13, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • Mack

      Mark – Is my position that there is not a 20 foot tall dragon in my back yard a belief system that needs definition and comparison to some loon's claims that there is? That should clarify why atheism is not a religion.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Mark, what is your problem? You dwell on this issue like Chad dwells on evolution.

      Do you really think you're convincing anyone? Is this what you mean when you mouth on about "the middle"?

      What do you hope to achieve by pretending that atheism is a religion? What will such a position do for you?

      August 13, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
    • Mark from Middle River

      Hi Mack. To those of Faith the denial that there is a God or Gods that Atheist state is also a claim of Faith since they can not prove it as well.

      That should clarify why atheism is seen now as a religion by a growing number.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      "Growing number"? Of what? Morons?

      I don't have "faith" that there is no deity. I simply see no evidence for one. Do you have any? If so, the world will beat a path to your door.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:47 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      "To those of Faith the denial that there is a God or Gods that Atheist state is also a claim of Faith since they can not prove it as well."

      I hope that your writing in your college papers is better than this. If it isn't, I hope the instructors tear you a new one.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
    • jimmer

      So Mark, exactly what religion should we name Mack's lack of a belief that 20 foot dragon lives in his back yard.

      Atwentyfootdragoninmybackyardiesm.

      Fvcking dunce.

      So according to your logic I am an abigscarymonsterisundermybedeism.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
    • Mark from Middle River

      Tom,Tom. It is not just myself who are seeing the similarities these days between Atheism and established organized Religions. Especially, with the active evangelism we see in some Atheist these days. I am not saying that this a bad thing. The active objections are understandable but at the same time the comments from some Atheist when folks call Atheism a Religion echo those among the African American community when Lesbian and Gays compare their movement to that of the civil rights movement. Or, to get even further, when some Gays and Lesbians do not want to count transe'xuals as the same as them.

      To myself, when I see Atheist become more open in some ways I am happy to see that freedom in society. The thing is that I do fear that just like the divisions within Atheism will open up and we will have Atheist that desire coexistence and ones that are desiring to go the route of physical and negative impact of those in the established Faiths.

      L'Chaim

      August 13, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
    • Mark from Middle River

      Jimmer, if you are one that needs to be concerned about what another believes then you and the 700club types can get together and have party. 🙂

      For myself, I just choose to deal with my faith and relationship with God.

      Peace dude.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
  13. AverageJoe76

    Man's Biggest Waste Of Time: The Invisibles.

    Look at all the brain power we've wasted on this issue throughout our existence. And the questions will NEVER be answered. If there was a virus for the brain (the world's most advanced computer we know of....) it would have to be investment into totally unprovable things. We can eventually prove/disprove; Loch Ness, Bigfoot, Aliens. But God...?? Never. Good Luck. forget Toothfairy and Santa references..... proving the existence of God, solely depends on God revealing itself. And even if something came forth, we'llm still be skeptical. It's in our nature. Other than that..... live well mammals. You'll never know the answer to God/ NonGod, so just live well. Eat some food.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      The perfect religious agenda, don't question it just accept it. FAIL

      August 13, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      @TheVocalAtheist – And it's such a shame. We are predators in every aspect. We prey on each other. We have to fit into groups, even when we see the obsurdity of the group. People are dying over the invisibles. And the humans that excel in manipulation continue even when they don't believe it themselves. Idk what will change us. I just hope it doesn't have to coincide with some global catastrophy in get us to wake up. Maybe the cultures of the world will all snap out of it gradually. At least, it's my best case scenario.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
  14. ME II

    While not incorrect I don't think the American Atheists org is doing itself or Atheists any favors with this negative campaigning.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
  15. Dr. R. Holcombe

    It is clear that many here who are taking the effort and time to respond here are pro-atheist. Really, who cares? You can stick into that dark hole your empty beliefs which means you believe in the great Nothing. Get a life instead of popping veins on your forehead attacking religion.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
    • JamesW

      yes, very true. It is amazing that they spend so much time beating up the Christians and getting so terribly personal. When it sure sounds if they had their way they would be even more over bearing and brutal than the Christians are.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      Truth be told. There's actually 'something' within the great nothing. Man should just humble himself. We don't know. We never knew. All our information about God, came from the brains and mouths of humans. But we're too ashamed to admit we've wasted sooo much time on this subject. And are no closer to God than when the first letter in Genesis was scribed. My religion is "I don't know". That actually makes me happy. Takes off a tremendous burden.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
    • James PDX

      How is this more personal than the Christians telling us we are PERSONALLY going to hell?

      August 13, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
    • ME II

      If believers wouldn't try to legislate our lives, such things wouldn't be necessary. (Missouri amendment 2, creationism/ID in science, gay marriage, "blue" laws, etc)

      August 13, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
    • Mack

      Non-belief in a deity is on the rise. People need to know (and see) that it's OK to challenge the myriad of non-compatible faiths that can't all be true at the same time. It is no longer taboo to criticize these silly beliefs and traditions.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
    • jimmer

      What the fvck, let's just burn some witches.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:54 pm |
  16. Gods child

    Good one CNN. Yet again instead of giving the proper respect and acknowldgement to our lord and savior JESUS CHRIST, you post a story that has nothing to do with what we need to be hearing and expercing and all to do with the antichrist spirit. boo you CNN boo you.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
    • James PDX

      Why would a news agency give respect to God, much less try to recruit for him? What a silly post.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      This is a belief blog, not a christard blog...get over your self-righteousness...you are not the only people to reside in the world. While I do not support this propaganda, it really is not different than christards going and handing out buybulls or
      JW's standing on a street corner.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • NUMBNUT

      I am sure there are other news sites that will cater to your ideals. Certainly you cannot expect to agree with EVERY article, every story, every idea in the world. When CNN posts a pro-Christian article, I read those, but I'm not going to blasts those that believe in god or jesus. That is what makes the human mind interesting. We can believe in whatever we want to. You see, I grew up Roman Catholic: went to church, got confirmed the whole bit, but I always knew in my heart I didn't believe. I am completely comfortable with myself in who I am, so I don't need a false god to make me feel better. I call it true freedom. Have a good day.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
    • jimmer

      If you want to find a bunch of people who believe everything that you do and only post positive things about god and jesus go to..

      weareallfvckingstupidandthinkalike.com

      August 13, 2012 at 1:56 pm |
  17. Bill

    While I do believe in God and consider myself a Christian, I do agree that religion has no place in politics. A person's faith should have no bearing on whether or not they are fit to run a country. I know quite a few Christians that I wouldn't trust to run a lemonade stand, let alone a country. Just the same, I'm sure there are plenty of good leaders out there that don't believe in God.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
    • JamesW

      I have thought that very same thought. However, i have also decided it is not possible, we are humans, we like things to be the way we believe they should be. Everyone should be glad we do not really live under a religious rule like Iran or simliar places that really are ruled by religion. We just live by the pieces of religion we can get voted in. You don't like the way it is, go vote!!

      August 13, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
  18. ToddHugie

    These people are a bunch of ignoramuses. They are embarrassing themselves. They should do some research before putting up a billboard or poster like this. I'm Mormon and we don't believe God is an alien. We don't baptize dead people. There are more poor people by far than rich people in the religion. I'll bet we give much much more in helping the poor and needy around the world than do the Atheists.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
    • No Truth, Just Claims

      "We don't baptize dead people. "

      Explain this then

      http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/02/15/mormons-still-baptizing-dead-jews-despite-agreements-to-end-practice.html

      August 13, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
    • James PDX

      It has long been acknowledged that the Mormon church baptises dead people. There have even been lawsuits to stop them from baptizing the dead who were not of their faith.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
    • Topher

      Yeah, sorry, dude, but you do believe God is an alien and that if a Mormon is good, he'll get his own planet to be the god of. And let's not forget how you believe Jesus and Satan are spirit-brothers and that Jesus and his father and his father and so on were all created. This isn't the God of the Bible at all.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
    • Grow up dummy

      Show us the golden tablets your Morman founder found and then lost. Grow up dummy !

      August 13, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      Todd: Wow...you're the ignorant one. Your whole belief system next to Scientology is one of the newest and you belief system believes in polygamy (how many wives do you have?). As for what Atheists do: Doctors Without Borders; UNICEF; PlanUSA; United Nations Childrens Fund; The SEED Foundation; kiva.ord; OXFAM; Rotary/Rotary International; Goodwill Industries.
      Don't think you're so special...the christards honestly believe you're in a cult!

      August 13, 2012 at 1:36 pm |
    • Jo

      We don't "baptize dead people," we perform vicarious ordinances on behalf of the dead. It's the difference between digging up a dead body and immersing it in water, which would be creepy, vs. having the words "on behalf of so-and-so" included in the regular baptisimal ordinance. Also, in response to the inevitable comments about how this is disrespectful, there are two scenarios here:

      Scenario A: Mormonism is correct. These people are being given the _choice_ to accept a baptism after their death, instead of being damned because they happened to be born somewhere where they never had the opportunity to be baptized while they were living. If they don't want the baptism, they can reject it. This scenario is no different, and therefore no more disrespectful, than proselytizing to the living, since the dead are equally able to say "No, thanks."

      Scenario B: Mormonism is not correct. In this case, baptisms for the dead don't do anything, so it's really not worth making a fuss about.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
    • Thomas

      The LDS do not baptize dead people (which conjures up grave robbing to baptize a dead body) but baptize on behalf of the person who has died, a proxy being a better word. This gives the essence of the person (spirit, which does not die in the sense that a body dies) an opportunity to accept or decline.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
    • Grow up dummy

      If mormans are so kind and generous why did they go through so much effort to block gay marriage in California ? If you're not gay, gay marriage is as much your business to worry about as your special underwear is to non mormans.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
    • JeramieH

      Wow, I had a flashback to the 17th century reading this thread. I almost forgot this was the 21st century.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
    • Mack

      Todd – Of course the LDS baptize the dead. You either don't understand your own faith or enjoy lying a lot.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:48 pm |
    • No Truth, Just Claims

      Thomas,

      Ohhh, that is perfectly reasonble when you put it that way....*sarcasm*

      August 13, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
  19. TheFacts

    Apparently it was just an amazing coincidence that every Communist of historical note publicly declared his atheism.

    There have been twenty-eight countries in world history that can be confirmed to have been ruled by regimes with avowed atheists at the helm. These twenty-eight historical regimes have been ruled by eighty-nine atheists, of whom more than half have engaged in democidal acts of the sort committed by Stalin and Mao…

    The total body count for the ninety years between 1917 and 2007 is approximately 148 million dead at the bloody hands of fifty-two atheists, three times more than all the human beings killed by war, civil war, and individual crime in the entire twentieth century combined.

    The historical record of collective atheism is thus 182,716 times worse on an annual basis than Christianity’s worst and most infamous misdeed, the Spanish Inquisition. It is not only Stalin and Mao who were so murderously inclined, they were merely the worst of the whole Hell-bound lot.

    For every Pol Pot whose infamous name is still spoken with horror today, there was a Mengistu, a Bierut, and a Choibalsan, godless men whose names are now forgotten everywhere but in the lands they once ruled with a red hand.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
    • Prayer changes things

      Keep grapsing with assertions. lol

      August 13, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
    • James PDX

      God once murdered every man, woman, child and fetus on the planet except for one incestuous family. Nobody can top that accomplishment, and I'm pretty sure God is a theist.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:24 pm |
    • Wrenn_NYC

      ... And most of these 'facts' can't be confirmed by any reputable or prominent historian!

      it's all a conspiracy I tell you.

      All those religious types who were serial killers (like BTK) – a conspiracy. Bruce Lee, David Berkowizt, Coral Eugene Watts... A conspiracy. /sarcasm

      Hitler was a christian.

      I'm amazed how these people believe this crap. Does it make them sleep better at night? to retroactively claim that 'x' who did something bad was not a christian, not 'one of us'? Even when it's a complete and utter falsehood?

      August 13, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
    • Leo

      James, but I thought you didn't believe the Bible??

      August 13, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
    • James PDX

      I don't. But since they do, they have to deal with what is written in it – which is why they lose every argument.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • Oneironaut

      No one ever said that atheists aren't capable of atrocities. But they do not commit them in the name of atheism, and that's the difference. Belief in god has been specifically used as a primary reason for all sorts of genocides and crusades. Atheists have never tortured people just because they believed in god or wouldn't convert to atheism. Their other ideologies were used as excuses.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
  20. TheFacts

    Explanatory links between atheism and mass murders

    There are causal links between mass murder and atheism. Atheism, lack belief in God, have the following characteristics that can lend itself to mass murder and can explain why the greatest mass murderers were atheists

    lack of recognition of an ultimate judge of moral actions and a judge who sets injustice aright in a last judgment, and thus do not recognize the immorality of murder.

    lack of seeing the importance of human beings as images of God and so easily discarding them as merely material things, products of mere chance.

    lack of acknowledging an external standard of moral perfection, thus ending up with self-created standards which can include killing for political survival.

    absence of guidance by divine revelation of the moral law, such as "Thou shalt not kill".

    following an ethic of atheistic evolutionism that is based on the survival and victory of the fittest, which is ultimately a "bloodthirsty ethic", the words of Joseph Ratzinger, that is an ethic that is eager to kill and to maim.

    This ethic is about conquering others rather than self-conquest.

    August 13, 2012 at 1:18 pm |
    • QS

      LMAO! That's so far beyond illogical I don't know where to begin!

      August 13, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
    • No Truth, Just Claims

      These are assertions, I can make up stuff too....

      August 13, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
    • ME II

      Atheism, as a lack of belief, is not a justification for anything, that requires a philosophy, or religion.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
    • Huebert

      Nice straw man argument. I have some old overalls you can borrow if you want to make it look more realistic.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
    • Prayer changes things

      Prime example of Christians blaming the minority for its ills. How much blood shed killing in the name of Christ? And the biggest serial killer of all time is God lol

      August 13, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
    • James PDX

      God was the most prolific mass murder of all time. Was God an atheist?

      August 13, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
    • Grow up dummy

      There is no link between atheism and violence . . . Ever heard of the crusades, Spanish inquisition, Puritan witch burnings ? Get your facts straight dummy !

      August 13, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • Wrenn_NYC

      I don't think you're supposed to copy block quote Conservapedia here in the comments. Especially without citing your quote sources. You do know that that site is a joke, right?

      I do feel sorry for you that you can't form your own sentences and paragraphs and the like. Or spout your own opinion... just regurgitate something you've been 'told'. Shows a lack of critical thinking on your part.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • bp

      "I am now as before a Catholic and will always remain so." – Adolf Hitler, to General Gerhard Engel, 1941

      August 13, 2012 at 1:33 pm |
    • SImran

      Guess what, the least violent religions – dont believe in a Creator God? Now google violence in Jainism and Buddhism vs other religions and give us the evidence.
      A supernatural God concept started in the Paleolithic age to manage herds of people. But guess what, this is not the Paleolithic Age!
      Moroever, while the aim of religion today might be attainment of spirituality, but sadly it does the exact opposite.

      The essence of religion:
      Fear God and obey God.
      The quintessence of spirituality:
      Love God and become another God."

      August 13, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
    • SImran

      "Absence of guidance by divine revelation of the moral law" – Really? Is that the reason for the pedo.phile practice of several parsons??? Who else to have divine revelation?

      August 13, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Cutting and pasting from Conservapedia is not much better than quoting NaturalNews or World Net Daily.

      If you can't do better than that, just take your balls and go home.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
    • Mack

      Facts: Based on all of that, you'd certainly expect to find higher-than-normal proportions of atheists in prison. In fact, it's the opposite. Explain that one.

      August 13, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
    • SImran

      "lack of recognition of an ultimate judge of moral actions and a judge who sets injustice aright in a last judgment, and thus do not recognize the immorality of murder"

      Now lets look at how rationally people behave when there is a judge who says THOU SHALL NOT KILL!

      http://bibleapologetics.wordpress.com/christianity-and-the-witch-hunt-era-17/

      The following charges have been directed at Christianity generally, and the established church specifically:

      * That 9 million people were killed as a result of the witch hunts

      * That the witch hunts were the product of a deliberate campaign by the established church to suppress an ancient pagan ‘mother goddess’ religion, or (more generally), to suppress women

      * That the witch hunts were the result of hysterical anti-heresy efforts carried out by the Inquisition

      * That the witch hunt era came to an end as a result of the ‘Age of Reason’, the rise of science, and a declining belief in the supernatural

      August 13, 2012 at 1:59 pm |
    • SImran

      Can suggest a novel/ movie based on the last Witch trials in 1600s (Salem Witch Trials) – THE CRUCIBLE (Arthur Miller, Movie 1996)

      August 13, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
    • SImran

      "Atheist ethic is about conquering others rather than self" – Now lets look at who conquers whom?
      http://gbgm-umc.org/umw/bible/crusades.stm/

      There were seven major Crusades. The era the Crusades the first began in 1095 with Pope Urban II's famous speech and the ended in 1291 when Acre, the last of the Latin holdings in Palestine, was lost. The major Crusades were:

      the first, 1095-1099, called by Pope Urban II and led by Peter the Hermit, Walter the Penniless, Godfrey of Bouillon, Baldwin and Eustace of Flanders, and others (see also first crusade);
      the second, 1147-49, headed by King Louis VII who was enlisted by Bernard of Clairvaux, was a disastrous failure, including the loss of one of the four Latin Kingdoms, the Duchy of Edessa;
      the third, 1188-92, proclaimed by Pope Gregory VIII in the wake of the catastrophe of the second crusade, which conducted by Emperor Frederick Barbarossa, King Philip Augustus of France and King Richard "Coeur-de-Lion" of England;
      the fourth, during which Constantinople was sacked, 1202-1204 (see also fourth crusade);
      the fifth, which included the conquest of Damietta, 1217-1221;
      the sixth, in which Frederick II took part (1228-29); also Thibaud de Champagne and Richard of Cornwall (1239);
      the seventh, led by St. Louis (Louis IX of France), 1248-50

      August 13, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
    • SImran

      From the speech of Pope Urban 2 who led the first crusade –

      The noble race of Franks must come to the aid their fellow Christians in the East. The infidel Turks are advancing into the heart of Eastern Christendom; Christians are being oppressed and attacked; churches and holy places are being defiled. Jerusalem is groaning under the Saracen yoke. The Holy Sepulchre is in Moslem hands and has been turned into a mosque. Pilgrims are harassed and even prevented from access to the Holy Land.

      "The West must march to the defense of the East. All should go, rich and poor alike. The Franks must stop their internal wars and squabbles. Let them go instead against the infidel and fight a righteous war.

      "God himself will lead them, for they will be doing His work. There will be absolution and remission of sins for all who die in the service of Christ. Here they are poor and miserable sinners; there they will be rich and happy. Let none hesitate; they must march next summer. God wills it!

      August 13, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64
Advertisement
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.