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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. Oliver Jack Peter

    Thank Christians for your abilty to read. The Protestants decided that everyone should read the Bible for themselves to connect with God, instead of having some catholic priest be the intermediary and read the Bible for them. So they began mass literacy programs. Even athiests admit to that (see Sarah Vowell's "Unfamiliar Fishes.") So be happy that instead of being an uneducated, ignorant catholic, you get to be an overeducated, ignorant athiest! Good for you, and keep telling yourself how smart you are, you'll probably believe it until the moment of your death... and then...

    August 13, 2012 at 11:51 am |
    • William Demuth

      Nonesense once again.

      I was taught by a Jew and a Shintoist.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:53 am |
    • religion; a way to control the weak minded

      " Good for you, and keep telling yourself how smart you are, you'll probably believe it until the moment of your death... and then..."

      LOL and then what? What happens when we die? and how do you know?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:56 am |
    • GayAtheist

      A Gay Man, Alan Turing, stopped Hitler and saved the Jews and the world...then he invented your computer.

      IF YOU CAN READ THIS, THANK A GAY.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Oliver, if you actually knew how to spell "atheist", it might help your case. I doubt it, though.

      Don't even bother with the 'typo' lie.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:04 pm |
    • setnommarih

      and then...And then you die of course. No one I know who has died has ever come back in any way.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:07 pm |
    • kindless

      Oh Ollie Jack – you too silly and sound frustrated. Get yourself a good cup of chamomile tea.

      Sure the Protestants got us the bible translated. My word – big deal. the important thing is that we are learning more and more that the early church put together that book like they were preparing a bill for congress (and we know how well that goes..lol). And we know the catholics in particular were ear-marking that bill with all kinds of strange things that had very little to do with the main character in that book, who was just a man, but had some good ideas. So regardless of whether you can read it or not, it's just a wacky old story book anyway.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:25 pm |
  2. Sarah

    Dear Other Atheists,
    Can you guys stop being jerks for like five minutes? We could totally use that billboard money to promote the sciences or feed the hungry. Since the billboards aren't likely to change anyone's mind, just about any other use for that money is a better one.
    Just saying,
    Sarah

    August 13, 2012 at 11:51 am |
    • William Demuth

      Sarah.

      No. We can't

      Can't you stop using your cults monies to protect men who bugger little boys?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:52 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Sarah, did this group use your money? No? If you want to buy advertising for something else, then do so. You have no right to demand that others advertise as you wish when they're footing the bill.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:55 am |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      Sarah, can't you stop being a jerk for five seconds?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:56 am |
    • Brad_CC

      Better tell that to all the Christians and other religions with the millions of dollars they spend on amazing architecture that is, realistically, useless to man as a whole, the flare and pompousness that the Vatican (among others...many others) spend on gold and other fine products. Think of where all those TENS OF BILLIONS of dollars could have went if they weren't living so lavishly.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:57 am |
    • BRC

      Sarah,
      I think there are some misreads on your comment, and people think you're a believer. I'm going to go with what I thought you menat, which is that you're an atheist, and you would have prefered if the organization spent the money in a different way, like a large and public donation to a secular charity with the tag line "We gave $15K to feed people, you spent it on the roof of a church, what now?" I would agree with you that that would have been tactically better and more beneficial for people as a whole, but you can't win them all.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:59 am |
    • Sarah

      William, I'm also an atheist, so your statement makes little sense.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
    • Sarah

      BRC, Thanks for catching my meaning 🙂

      August 13, 2012 at 12:03 pm |
    • Rynomite

      Uh. William As Sarah begins with "Dear OTHER Atheists", the implication is that SHE herself is an atheist and not a member of the "cult who proctects men who bugger little boys." She merely believes that using money for billboards promoting Atheism is not really well spent. As a fellow Atheist, I tend to agree with her.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:04 pm |
    • J.W

      Yeah it would be nice if this organization did something positive.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:29 pm |
    • Miriam

      Sarah:

      Yours was a kind and humanistic reply. Those others are a nasty lot and I am sorry they turned on you for not being nasty. I am going to make a donation to a health-related charity in your name. This is what we need more of in this country. Creating community, not name-calling.

      August 14, 2012 at 12:06 am |
  3. Interesting

    American Atheists? So, there are practicing atheists out there? Does anyone else see the incongruity of that?

    August 13, 2012 at 11:51 am |
    • Allie

      Are there different types around the world?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:53 am |
    • John

      How do you think one practices being atheist? After that please explain if one can also practice being agnostic or being deist?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:54 am |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      You just don't get it do you?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:54 am |
    • AverageJoe76

      It's 'practicing' nothing in accordance with the invisibles. That's my take on it.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:55 am |
    • Drizzt

      My favorite amusement about religious people these days: Religion is so ingrained, so pervasive, and so saturated into their psyche that these groups cannot fathom someone who is simply NOT religious, so they regard atheist people the same way as members of a hostile religion.

      For the bazillionth time, atheists don't "believe" squat about religion, and that is the entire point. "Atheist" literally means "Not theist." Not religious. Does not believe in that stuff.

      The billboards and the attacks on faith and the rest are ways to get a message across, but it is not a religious one. Rather, it's a message pointing out how silly religious belief is to a large group of people, and that's a nearly impossible message to send without being offensive.

      When you tell a teenager it is silly to have an imaginary friend, it hurts their feelings, but is probably good for them. The situation with our society is similar; it's time to let go of the imaginary friend, sad as that may be.

      Oddly; that's the direction we're heading, anyway, regardless of billboards or messages sent. Knowledge transplants faith daily (or brings us closer to God, like the Tower of Babel story, or Icarus, to you believers). We will ALWAYS continue to learn and grow our knowledge, and individuals now know more than their counterparts 200 years ago, or 2000, depending on the age of a given faith. If all the religious leaders want their various "Gods" to be taken seriously, it's time to stop playing games that require faith, since faith is becoming a rather obvious crutch that our society is poised to cast off.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:20 pm |
    • mytwocents

      What in the words American Atheists tells you that they are practicing. Only a religious zealot would interpret this as a group that is "practicing" atheism. To any atheist, agnostic, or rational thinking person....American Atheists, is merely an assembly of individuals, invoking their first amendment right to assembly, with like minded individuals that share a similar belief. That belief is that there is no such thing as a deity. There is nothing to practice in atheism....only a person clouded with religion would have trouble comprehending this.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:31 pm |
  4. lolol

    funny since atheism is an imposible thing.

    August 13, 2012 at 11:50 am |
    • BRC

      how so? I could see that case for calling it unprovable, but impossible is a bit of a stretch.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:51 am |
    • Brad_CC

      How so? Atheism is the absence in the belief in the existence of deities, that is very much possible.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:53 am |
    • lolol

      since evidence equals not proof, therefore science cannot prove anything. therefore you can come up with all the evidence in the world, atheists can't prove god doesn't exist or that we come from the results of the big bang or whatever you can come up with. everything is faith either in science or religion.
      there is only theism and agnostism.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:55 am |
    • Brad_CC

      Atheism is a lack of belief in something....never said it existed, just that in my view it does not. Now...lets see you prove that your god exists because the script can be flipped back on you very easily;

      Since evidence equals not proof, therefore science cannot prove anything. therefore you can come up with all the evidence in the world, Christians can't prove god doesn't exist or that we come from the results of the falling of an apple from a tree or whatever you can come up with. Not everything is faith either in science or religion.

      There is much more than theism and agnostism.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • BRC

      no, I can be and am an atheist, I just can't prove that I'm right.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
    • lolol

      brad, I just told you that nobody can't prove anything. can't you read?
      Atheists claim there is no god/deity, but they can't prove it. sounds like a belief system to me.
      christians doesn't have to prove you anything since their way of life is based on F A I T H and they will tell you.
      The burden of proof is on those that claim they have P R O O F.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:18 pm |
    • lolol

      BRC. you're an agnostic. stop lying to yourself.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:19 pm |
    • BRC

      yes, atheism is a belief. A belief that there are no gods. theism = belief in gods atheism= belief there are no gods. Atheism and belief are not mutually exclusive. When you have a perfunctory understanding of how words work you can come back and try to tell me what I believe.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:30 pm |
    • lolol

      then atheism is nothing more than a religion.
      atheists' gods are stephen hawking and his buddies. their bible is all their scientific books.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:39 pm |
    • BRC

      @lolol,
      I said WHEN you had a full understanding or words, you're early. Belief does not equal religion, it is merely a component. I believe sprite is better than sierra mist, that does not make me a spritist. Religions are organizations with shared and accepted ceremonies, beliefs, rules, and several other defining elements. Belief alone doesn't get you there. Now, this American Atheist group is working its way towards being a religion, but I don't belong to that and never would, so that doesn't count against me.

      On the flip side, you can have a theist, who does believe there are gods, but doesn belong to religion. BUT, my belief is that religion is bad and gods don't exist. That's an atheist by deffinition, so you may want to start by looking up the word impossible.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
    • fintastic

      @lolol-oad of crap...

      ... and not playing chess is a hobby. You're not very bright are you?

      August 13, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
  5. atheistsarethenewfundamentalists

    Those people are so annoying.

    August 13, 2012 at 11:47 am |
    • Dave

      I know. Faith is a mental illness. All those god-believers are truly annoying. "Make sky daddy happy! Hate different people and be a hypocrite!"

      August 13, 2012 at 11:48 am |
    • Allie

      Dave there are billions of people of Faith WHO IS ANNOYING YOU SPECIFICALLY AND WHAT ARE THEY SAYING THAT IS ANNOYING TO YOU?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:52 am |
    • Tim

      Yeah. Logic and reality are so boring.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:53 am |
    • Drizzt

      Well, you'd be one, Ms. caps lock.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:57 am |
    • Dave

      They say that there's a god, first of all. The lack of reason and logic is appalling. Then, they try to force their imagined morals on us.

      Allie, there is no god. Live your life the best you can, because there is no afterlife or eternal reward waiting for you...only this short human existence.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:57 am |
    • Elimar

      How is it that so many people try to give itnnlligeet answers within this forum yet, are so short sighted?I do not consider myself to be very smart, however, reasonably itnnlligeet.Before I give my oppinion or ask a question, I do implement my homework.For those who look at my avatar and decide that I am an aloof crack-pot, I urge them to research what I have to say .For those who were born within the past twenty years and feel that the 60 s were a hundred million years ago, I can tell that history was not their forte'.It is said that, If we do not learn from the past then we are damned to repeat the same mistakes. In regards to the Northwoods Black opps, I urge anyone interested in the declassified information from the U.S Department of Defense to click on to Conspiracy Theories Michael Meacher, Former British Environment Minister.You can research the entire article at length at ( 9/11 conspiracy theories.)True knowledge is not found by following mere sound-bytes but through extensive studies and research.The tool is already at your fingertips use it .

      September 7, 2012 at 12:12 pm |
  6. bcarpe

    Religion isn't divisive because it claims that God exists. It's divisive because it often involves a set of ideals which people hold strongly to. And I'm pretty sure that even if people stopped believing in God, we wouldn't all suddenly come to have the same ideals. I think people who claim we'll all be much more peaceful without religion are a bit short-sighted.

    August 13, 2012 at 11:46 am |
    • Dustin C

      Exactly. People have carried out some pretty atrocious things while explicitly rejecting God. E.g. the Reign of Terror, Stalin's atrocities, etc.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:53 am |
    • Drizzt

      You're absolutely correct. But your argument also means that the religious tenets and value systems are also in conflict and are ineffective.

      I'd take a bunch of people collaborating on belief systems, without need to "recruit" to an organized religion, and discussing how best to implement the "Golden Rule", which is truly the only value system you need, so long as it is followed it honestly. All the rest of organized religion is divisive fluff.

      Would you rather have you children do the right thing (avoid drugs, not crash the car, not bang the boyfriend, etc) because: 1) God will be disappointed in them, sending them to hell years and years and years down the line or 2) doing the right thing will benefit them in the long run, make them feel proud of themselves for rising above poor decisions, and allows them to contribute to society and their loved ones?

      I'll let you guess which way I raise my kids.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:55 am |
    • kindless

      bcarpe wrote: "And I'm pretty sure that even if people stopped believing in God, we wouldn't all suddenly come to have the same ideals."

      Oh, that's a silly notion to expect anyway. But if people for some reason suddenly stopped believing in God, it would certainly be a mess for a while. Can you imagine? The sudden loss of religion for some of these weak-minded folk? They'd be running around and p00pin all over the place. And, yes, we atheists would have to be comforting them and carrying around dog p00p bags – even if we just have cats – oh lawdy what a mess that would be. But, of course, it would be better in the long run – that's for sure. I have to get a cup of tea – I don't even want to think about that.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • kindless

      And Dustin C and others keep bringing up these notorious rulers and really don't reflect atheism. Most of them stuck to some religion during their lives but they were so motivated by power that they would do anything. So it doesn't help to associate those types with atheism in the same way we wouldn't want to associate Hitler with Christianity.

      Now the Catholic church is another story altogether. You just pick up a good newspaper and see that their beliefs just keep them in trouble all the time. They so have misrepresented their founding figure. Can you image Jesus running around and telling people to not use contraception even if it would be heathy for them? Oh my I have to laugh. Well truth is, it is not funny. Catholics should be ashamed for some of the lunacy that's built into that religion.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:07 pm |
    • bcarpe

      @ Drizzt
      You're cool.

      @ Kindless
      I couldn't tell if you actually meant to make a discussion point with your first comment or if you were just trying to stir up aggravation. If you'd like to clarify it, I'll try to answer. Otherwise, I'll just ignore it.

      Regarding your second comment, however: bringing up those characters wasn't (or wouldn't, if I mentioned them anyways. I can't read Dustin's mind) to say Atheism causes evil. It's to say that even apart from religion, people don't suddenly all agree on the what's right and become peaceful. Stalin didn't kill a bunch of people to serve God. The Reign of Terror didn't occur because people thought they could create a more holy society. Evil can be done for purely secular reasons, and this is well illustrated in these two examples. For further reading on how people can be in vicious secular disagreement over things which may have dire consequences for those involved, see the comments section of any recent post on CNN about the economy.

      As far as Jesus telling people not to use contraception even though it might be healthy for their bodies, this is the man who said "If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off; it is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go to Hell." Now, the Catholic church says Jesus was using hyperbole in this case. But the point still stands: The state of the soul is more important than the state of the body. And furthermore: in which cases are contraceptives healthy for you and the Catholic Church condemns their use?

      August 13, 2012 at 12:44 pm |
  7. Allie

    Well the good news is that Christians procreate in pretty decent numbers so there are more coming!

    August 13, 2012 at 11:45 am |
    • Dave

      That's "good news"? The planet is overpopulated and there is no god.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:47 am |
    • John

      And they will lose their faith by a 2 to 1 margin when by the time they graduate college. 🙂

      August 13, 2012 at 11:48 am |
    • Allie

      That's your opinion.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:48 am |
    • Bob

      The only good news within that is that some who are born into Christian families are actually smart enough to realize that the claims of the Christian religion are complete hogwash.

      And think about this: had you been born in one of the countries in the Middle East other than Israel, you likely would be a Muslim.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:49 am |
    • Dave

      Neither one of the things I said is an opinion.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:49 am |
    • Allie

      Don't you know Christians are creating those Christian Madrassahs that Bill Mahar speaks of.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:50 am |
    • Allie

      Dave – its opinion. You will never convince me that God is not real.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:51 am |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      So allie

      If your so called God is real would you be able to prove it to me?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:53 am |
    • Dave

      Allie, I don't need to convince you that the sky is blue, do I?

      There is no god. I'd like to say you'll find that out, but when you die, you're just dead. There is no need to convince you of anything. As I say...faith is a mental illness.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:54 am |
    • Allie

      If you want proof just open yourself to him. God isn't going to come down and say oh hey John what up? It will be a feeling where you know in its abesence you are lonely and desire it back.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:56 am |
    • Dave

      I am rather content and live a fulfilling life without faith. I live to make myself the best person I can be, because I know there is no reward after I die.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:59 am |
    • Answer

      @Allie

      The ever popular notion of "open yourself to this delusion.. then let the spirit of my insanity reach you"..

      Always laughable. You people love to emphasize your emotions A LOT.

      "Oh this feeling of being connected to my sky daddy FEELS SO GREAT!"

      "You wouldn't know the spectacular JOYOUS feeling of LOVE."

      Get a grip on your delusions. The most absurd turds of spewage are of these emotional pleas. Conviction? Your kind loves to emphasize on your faith in your sky daddy. Filled with fantasy of the afterlife.. but your kind never accepts a quick death.

      Why don't you QUICKLY get this life over with? Your heaven awaits.. so GO.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:04 pm |
  8. Reality99

    Atheists are irrelevant. That's why they need a billboard... because no one listens to them.

    August 13, 2012 at 11:44 am |
    • Honey Badger Dont Care

      This is just what you would expect to hear from someone terrified of someone who can effectively oppose them.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:46 am |
    • Brad_CC

      Christians are loud and annoying, I have never had an atheist show up at my door on Saturday morning while enjoying breakfast with my children only to rant and rave, frothing at the mouth when you tell them you aren't interested, about why/ why not god exists only to argue further when you tell them you are not interested in talking about it.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:49 am |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      Atheists are necessary to our survival, our link to intellect and progress. All the while you believers just suck-in the status quo and force your agenda's.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:51 am |
    • Alcoholiday

      I see a lot more religious billboards. On my way to work there's one that reads "When you die you will meet God"

      August 13, 2012 at 11:52 am |
    • GayAtheist

      Everyone is listening to the Christians? The Pentagon is celebrating GAY PRIDE, not Christian pride.
      Family Planning is easier to get than ever.
      Marriage equality is only moving foreward, not back.

      What were you saying again, you minority christian bigot?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:56 am |
  9. Brad_CC

    I love religion LOL sheeple will do anything sometimes to feel as though they belong and are one of the flock.

    Wow...god sent his only son...that he could carry on a full conversation with but that person (along with the holy spirit mind you) is one and the same as god himself. I believe that would be deemed schizophrenia or multiple personality syndrome according to their definitions. Good job sheeple, follow the crazy man and try to make sense of it – oh and that crazy man may not even exist (personally I do not believe he does, but I wont question that, this is more of an argument surrounding WHY WOULD YOU EVEN FOLLOW HIM TO BEGIN WITH!)

    Further to that, a common argument is that after 2000 years, man has not saved himself so he never will so this god must step in...well in 2000 years he never stepped in to offer any support so what does that tell you of your so called god?!

    If you had an employer that let his business totally fail and never once did anything to address it, would you not seek new employment because you see that person as a failure and incompetent? Consider god your employer if you "believe" in him and being saved because you honestly are working for that charade.

    August 13, 2012 at 11:43 am |
  10. Allie

    Etalan

    He was raise as a catholic for his whole childhood, his parent was both a priest and a nun. He spend 5 years in a catholic school, before he quit and join politic and kill million of religion people. Stalin can be religion catholic or atheism, but it was his catholic background that make him kill all those people.
    ------
    Really? Then why did Stalin jail and kill the Clergy in Poland and why the Polish have to start the Solidarity movement and why did the Soviet try to kill Pope John Paul II?

    August 13, 2012 at 11:43 am |
    • Mara

      Stalin oppressed the Polish clergy for the same reason he re-established the Russian Orthodox Church...because their flocks of sheeple were more easily controlled if Stalin controlled the Church. And since he went to seminary as a young man...he knew how the Church worked. As for the rediculous questions on Solidarity and the Pope...what do these issues have to do with Stalin and his relationship with religion? He'd been dead for three decades before they happened! Unless you believe that people (like Jusus, and Lazerus, and Dracula, and assorted zombies...) come back from the dead and walk among us...

      August 13, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
  11. J.W

    I would hope that most atheists would denounce this.

    August 13, 2012 at 11:42 am |
    • sam stone

      why?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:43 am |
    • William Demuth

      You would also hope to escape death by buying into cult nonesense.

      In both cases you would be wrong.

      I am sending them a check!

      August 13, 2012 at 11:43 am |
    • TooDark

      Then you would be disappointed.

      So it's perfectly acceptible for theists to plaster the countryside with how hell awaits, but pointing out the demonstrable lunacy of their beliefs is somehow distasteful?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:45 am |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      Your hope is meaningless.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:48 am |
    • BRC

      Denounce would be a strong word. I support their sentiment, but I question the execution.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:54 am |
    • Answer

      @BRC

      Well I sorta understand the timing of it.. executing it in the same time frame where you'll be inundated with upcoming election stuff. Makes sense. Let more people see them.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:57 am |
    • GayAtheist

      Why not pray Atheism away?

      Instead of whining about it.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:58 am |
    • J.W

      If you disagree with it when theists do it why do you lower yourself to the same level?

      August 13, 2012 at 12:04 pm |
    • J.W

      And when did I ever whine about it?

      August 13, 2012 at 12:05 pm |
    • BRC

      @Answer,
      The timing is good, I question the medium. As I said in a post above, a much better action would have been a string of public donations to worthy secular causes, show that we use our money in better ways, and make the point that we don't need to take the time to point out how silly religion is, it does that on it's own.

      Just like anyone I love taking the obviously foolish pieces of religion and holding it up in front of believers askign them to explain it, but in teh end, what does that accomplish? By execution I meant I'd prefer if we showed that humanism can be better, not just pointed out that religion is bad.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:05 pm |
    • J.W

      I agree with BRC. This group is no better than the Christians that tell you you are going to hell. This seems like the American Athests are saying that they can be more hateful than any religion.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:17 pm |
  12. William Demuth

    I miss assasinations and rioting.

    What fun is it to have our season of political madness without a few snipers and cops with attack dogs?

    I am really hoping "Occupy" has some plans to wreak chaos this year

    August 13, 2012 at 11:42 am |
  13. Sam

    There are no atheists in foxholes. Wonder why?

    August 13, 2012 at 11:42 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      No. Prove there aren't, and then tell us all why.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:43 am |
    • Honey Badger Dont Care

      Probalby because we dont use fighting positions with overhead cover anymore. If we did then there would be plenty. I was for 25 years and there are many, many more atheists in the millitary.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:43 am |
    • sam stone

      Wow, Sam....that is an unproveable assertion.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:44 am |
    • Bob

      Sam, that is false, and an insult to the atheists in our military. I was one of them, so fsck you. Follow the link, and learn:

      http://militaryatheists.org/

      August 13, 2012 at 11:46 am |
    • William Demuth

      Because we send indoctrinated idiots to fight, while we stay home and shag thier wives and daughters.

      You don't really think we are stupid enought to get involved in your petty religious wars, do you?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:46 am |
    • TooDark

      Awwww....Cliches are cute. Actually there is a military organization specifically for that. militaryatheists.org.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:48 am |
    • Drizzt

      Even if all atheists in foxholes were to immediately believe in god so they have someone to beg for their lives, such as you suggest, would it really change anything? After all, God works in mysterious ways.

      I could just as easily say there are no dead religious people. Once people die, they're all atheist. Wonder why?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:48 am |
    • Really?

      Too busy shooting at all the religious extremists?

      August 13, 2012 at 11:48 am |
    • Quid Malmborg in Plano TX

      Correction: There are no TRUE atheists in foxholes. Once again we see how Religion operates using the wrong fallacy.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:50 am |
    • mytwocents

      That is because in a foxhole – fear, especially fear of dying is rampant. And when one is engrossed in fear they tend not to think rationally.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:51 am |
    • Answer

      The idiot religious people should reach for a new height in their folly of comments by stating that "there are no gays in foxholes".

      Try every little condescending dribble you have. You've got nothing and have always got nothing but your foolish mentality for being absolutely stupid.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:55 am |
    • SpongeBob

      I'll give you the benefit of the date that you understand the phrase is just an aphorism and not a fact. As to why: because when faced with death many people will believe anything. It'd be a good time to sell them snake oil.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
    • wwgia

      stupid argument, even if there were no atheist in fox holes because they decided to believe in God out of fear for their lives, it wouldn’t prove that theism, let alone Christianity is true in the slightest.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:14 pm |
  14. myron

    You will often find most atheists never progressed past childhood. As such their cries for attention is the fuel that drives their childish movement. Just don't take them any more serious then you would a 5 year old throwing a tantrum and you can then sit back and laugh at their antics. Really quite fun in a cruise line sort of way.

    August 13, 2012 at 11:42 am |
    • Drizzt

      Huh? Who believes in fairy tales to bail them out of rough times, and who faces life head on? Hmm.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:45 am |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      Hey myron!

      I don't think you could even hold a conversation with a 5 year old, let alone think like one. You don't have a clue, you're lost, you're misinformed and blatantly stupid.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:47 am |
    • sam stone

      Yeah, myron...beliieving that the creator of the whole universe knows your every thought and loves you enough to want to spend etermity with you is not at all childish.....

      go home, boy, and get your shinebox

      August 13, 2012 at 11:47 am |
    • TooDark

      Misspelled your screen name eh? mOron

      August 13, 2012 at 11:49 am |
    • Really?

      Yes, God loves you! Unless of course you falter then you will suffer an eternity burning in Hell! Seems reasonable...

      August 13, 2012 at 11:52 am |
  15. marcparella

    A conscientious atheist's job is not proselytize an anti-faith message in hopes of winning "converts". As an atheist I am in complete disagreement with so-called Atheist groups trying to "enlighten the faithful". The mysteries of the universe are still profound and religion is a personal decision that should be respected and tolerated. Atheists would do themselves a lot of good if they stayed away from the process of recruiting "converts" and denouncing religion. Atheism is not a religion or even an anti-religion; it is simply an absence of faith in a mystical origin of the universe. I could be as wrong as the authors of that billboard are right.

    August 13, 2012 at 11:40 am |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      Hey Marky Mark!

      You are a liar, you can't hide. An atheist doesn't sit by and watch injustice done to humanity by religion and a belief in an unproven supernatural being. Go away little boy.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:44 am |
    • TooDark

      As soon as they stop trying to make governmental policy based on the equivelent of reading entrails...you might have a point. Until then, they unabashedly proclaim that their beliefs trump our civil rights. You're wilfully blind if you think their mystical reasoning doesn't negatively affect your life.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:51 am |
    • angry emu

      Atheist ads are usually less about converting THEM and more about getting more of us out of the closet. It's about letting the ones out there know that they have like minded people out there. Lots of people feel trapped. They may not be as strong as you or could be have a very different life.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:52 am |
  16. ThinkAgain

    I would hope that atheists reject religion and not the concept of something greater than themselves. It is very liberating to be spiritual without the burden of religion.

    August 13, 2012 at 11:40 am |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      It would be better for you to think again.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:45 am |
    • Dave

      Atheism = no god, no 'higher power'. The only thing greater than the individual is society, our fellow brothers and sisters and the human bonds we share.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:46 am |
  17. Sam

    Well, if atheists are against it, that just means I am for it.

    August 13, 2012 at 11:40 am |
    • Dave

      Faith is a mental illness.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:45 am |
    • sam stone

      Good for you Sam....now get back on your knees like a good little servant

      August 13, 2012 at 11:49 am |
  18. Your Religion Might Be Bullshіt If...

    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MtX_R-V5Cws&w=640&h=360]

    August 13, 2012 at 11:40 am |
  19. Ed

    There is no God that's a given.

    August 13, 2012 at 11:40 am |
    • lolol

      prove it.

      August 13, 2012 at 12:29 pm |
  20. Hypocrites

    Oh look what a shock. Christian religions are evil. No word on the other most popular religion in the world.

    August 13, 2012 at 11:38 am |
    • Honey Badger Dont Care

      Since about 75% of the US population is xtian it only makes sense to target them. Also, if you had read the article, they are targetting the religotards running for president.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:42 am |
    • Drizzt

      Uh. The billboard targets the LDS faith (Romney) and a more general Christian belief (Obama). Typical knee-jerk reaction by a Christian.

      August 13, 2012 at 11:43 am |
    • Jduff

      and what percentage of that 75% just claims to be Christian because they think it makes them look good? 98%, 99%?

      August 13, 2012 at 12:23 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.