October 9th, 2013
02:27 PM ET
Creationists taunt atheists in latest billboard war
By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor
(CNN)– A new video billboard in New York's Times Square has a message from creationists, "To all of our atheist friends: Thank God you're wrong."
The video advertisement at 42nd Street and Eighth Avenue in Manhattan is one of several billboards going up this week in New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles, paid for by Answers in Genesis.
Answers in Genesis is best known as the multimillion-dollar Christian ministry behind the Creation Museum outside Cincinnati.
The museum presents the case for Young Earth creationism, following what it says is a literal interpretation of the book of Genesis, which says the Earth was created by God in six days less than 10,000 years ago.
Ken Ham, president of Answers in Genesis, said the idea for the advertisements came from an atheist billboard in Times Square at Christmas.
During the holidays, the American Atheists put up a billboard with images of Santa Claus and Jesus that read: "Keep the Merry, dump the myth."
“The Bible says to contend for the faith,” Ham said. “We thought we should come up with something that would make a statement in the culture, a bold statement, and direct them to our website.
"We're not against them personally. We're not trying to attack them personally, but we do believe they're wrong," he said.
"From an atheist's perspective, they believe when they die, they cease to exist. And we say 'no, you're not going to cease to exist; you're going to spend eternity with God or without God. And if you're an atheist, you're going to be spending it without God.' "
Dave Silverman, president of the American Atheists, said he felt sad for creationists when he saw the billboards.
"They refuse to look at the real world. They refuse to look at the evidence we have, and they offer none," Silverman said. "They might as well be saying, 'Thank Zeus you're wrong' or 'Thank Thor you're wrong.' "
Silverman said he welcomed another competitor to marketplace, noting that after atheists bought a billboard two years ago in Times Square that read "You KNOW it's a myth," the Catholic League purchased competing space at the entrance to the Lincoln Tunnel for a sign that read "You KNOW it's true."
"I would suggest, if they're actually trying to attract atheists, they should talk about proof and reason to believe in their god, not just some pithy play on words," Silverman said.
Ham says part of the goal of the campaign is to draw people to the website for Answers in Genesis, where he offers a lengthy post on his beliefs for the proof of God.
Ham insists that this campaign is in keeping with their overall mission. "We're a biblical authority ministry. We're really on about the Bible and the Gospel. Now, we do have a specialty in the area of the creation account and Genesis because that's where we say God's word has come under attack."
Ham said Answers in Genesis made the decision to split its marketing budget for the ministry between a regional campaign for the museum and this billboard campaign, rather than a national campaign.
IRS filings for the ministry in recent years have shown a yearly operating budget of more than $25 million. Ham said the marketing budget is about 2% of that, about $500,000 a year. Though they are waiting for all the bills to come due for this campaign, he said he expected it to cost between $150,000 and $200,000.
Silverman noted that his billboards were not video and cost approximately $25,000 last year. He said another campaign was in the works for this year.
"They're throwing down the gauntlet, and we're picking it up," Silverman said, adding that his group would "slap them in the face" with it.
Ham said that despite criticism from other Christians for being negative and the usual criticisms from secularists he received on his social media accounts, the advertisements have been a success.
"We wanted people talking about them, and we wanted discussion about this. We wanted people thinking about God," Ham said.
The Creation Museum and the theory of Young Earth creationism are widely reviled by the broader science community.
In a YouTube video posted last year titled "Creationism Is Not Appropriate For Children," Bill Nye the Science Guy slammed creationism, imploring parents not to teach it to their children. "We need scientifically literate voters and taxpayers for the future," he said. "We need engineers that can build stuff and solve problems."
The museum responded with its own video.
For the past 30 years, Gallup Inc. has been tracking American opinions about creationism.
In June 2012, Gallup's latest findings showed that 46% of Americans believed in creationism, 32% believed in evolution guided by God, and 15% believed in atheistic evolution.
For as long as Gallup has conducted the survey, creationism has remained far and away the most popular answer, with 40% to 47% of Americans surveyed saying they believed that God created humans in their present form at one point within the past 10,000 years.
The Creation Museum said it recently welcomed its 2 millionth visitor since its opening in 2007.
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.
Again, my favorite blog quote applies: "Religion is for the ignorant, the stupid, the cowardly, and the gullible, and for those who would profit from them."
Creationist idiots are yet again holding back science, and making the USA less competitive as a result, as our kids get forcefed creationist nonsense, their reasoning skills are compromised, and their courage to question authority is undermined.
Stand up against creationism and all its nonsense, USA, for your own good. It's time. Do it. Speak out.
Common Sense proves Creationism is a lie. And the fact that 46% of people in this country believe in this lie, says a lot about our current state. A story book written 1,600 years ago, that was meant to explain how unknown things happened has absolutely no barring on this day and age. We know now.
That's your belief as unfortunate as it is. you are 100%, without a doubt, no way around it sure about it?? You can prove that you are 100% right? You put the burden of proof on creationism, which by definition is FAIth to believe, and just claim you are right and you know all things. The sad part is that you are the one that is believing the lie. Your own so-called intelligence is pushing you farther and farther from God and is sealing your soul's eternal destination.
False analogy, skaly. A key point is that the evidence shows creationist claims to be wrong. It is not on an equal footing with actual science.
Young earth creationists are stupid and are an embarrassment to our great country. Stop supporting them.
Why don't u prove this by putting me to eternal damnation right now? I'm waiting
skalaballa, your god sounds like quite the ass hole, condemning someone for eternity for minor wrongdoings in a short mortal life.
Shove your sky ass wipe stories into history. 'nuff of them already.
STLBroker, you can see evolution in fruit flies just by changing conditions (e.g. hot, cold, etc). To dispute evolution is to choose to live in abject ignorance. There is no magical man in the sky. Take a high school science course and stop living in ignorance – you just sound stupid.
None deny microevolution. Do the fruit flies become another species?
Genetic studies say they have, yes.
Your name is an insult to both scientists and guys. And there is no such thing as micro or macro evolution, moron. Only evolution. Get a fscking education already.
My name describes me well. I am surprised that you are unaware of the distinction between micro and macro wrt evolution.
The process for micro and macro are the same. The only difference is time span. Evolution is simply change in gene pool of biological organisms over generations. Speciation simply the splitting of lineages, not the sole requirement for the process of evolution.
You are quite right that there is no magical man in the sky. However, there is your creator, sustainer, and judge who is the self-existent one from whom all derive their being. He is the God of all; he does as he pleases among the armies of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth. If you refuse his son, The Lord Jesus Christ, then his wrath abides on you. And it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
"However, there is your creator, sustainer, and judge who is the self-existent one from whom all derive their being. He is the God of all"
-No.....there is the baseless ASSERTION of such a god. You saying so...doesn't make it reality in the same way a person saying 'Leprechauns live underground' who simply happen to never be detected.....make that a reality. You repeating literature from a religious texts....still proves no such assertion. There are many religious texts that do similar.
"If you refuse his son, The Lord Jesus Christ, then his wrath abides on you. And it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God."
-why would someone be forced under threat of death or torture to accept such a ghastly position? Are you saying you believe this claim simply because you are afraid this asserted deity will harm you? Love someone who you fear? Fearing an assertion that has no proof of being a reality? What? Imagine how ridiculous an individual would look who said, "You have to bring gold and gifts to that tree hole for the rest of your life or the leprechaun will place a spell on you to be forever stung by hornets, bees, and wasps". Do you think anyone would take them seriously simply based on that assertion without any proof for verification?
Chimpanzees and humans have the same common ancestors. Educated people do not think humans evolved from chimps. Further evidence suggests that evolution can be slow but it can also be comparably rapid in adverse and quickly changing environments. Anyone who brushes off evolution because "humans couldn't have evolved from chimps" doesn't understand the theory at all and look rather foolish criticizing it.
sosilly, that's so true. I've yet to see a critic of modern evolution who can actually describe accurately what the theory of evolution says.
If you read the sign correctly, it is telling that:
THANK GOD YOU'RE WRONG
is saying to us
"To all of our atheist friends."
Does that make sense?
That was their point. You missed the intent of the message.
You guys are not too bright. LOOK at it.
Oh, I forgot Topher is a marketing genius. Topher guess what, I AM a graphic artist and I design marketing every day. This is a huge fail.
Doesn't have to make sense. A lot of ads don't make sense. The point is to call attention. Even BS can call attention.
and you wonder why US is last on the list among developed nations' student skill in science and math...
Really, do they have more sophisticated space programs?
That would be a genuine concern for something deeper that manifests as something else.
You mean the deep concern expressed in the belief blog is a genuine intellectual concern? Are all these people stellar scientists and mathematicians contributing to society by being role models for others?
but the scientists and engineers working on the space programs are mostly foreign born.
Can you cite your sources?
I think you have to ask yourself two questions here:
1. Why did the Americans race to Peenemünde to capture von Braun?
2. Whose rockets are being used to shuttle people to the ISS?
That's my worry as well, our competi tiveness is at stake.
"Scientific evidence does not support chimpanzees becoming modern human beings as quickly as they would have had to."
Nobody thinks that chimpanzees became human. We share a common ancestor with them. That lived about 6 million years ago. Clearly you don't understand this.
Religion is a cancer to the world. So much hate and divisiveness, so many wars, so much hypocrisy, so much greed and so much ignorance associated with it. When was the last time you heard about a bunch of scientists rounding up people by force, imrisoning them, torturing them , raping them, persecuting them, mistreating them and killing them in effort to "convert" them to what they believe in? Maybe it HAS happened somewhere, sometime in history, but NOWHERE NEAR the scale as Christianity and Islam, etc. for thousands of years. And this doesn't even talk about how much money religion has bilked over the ages. Atheists don't necessarily not believe in or even hate God. They just don't believe in God-or whatever it is that controls/manifests our higher being/essence- the way churches, the bible, the Koran, etc. demands everyone should.
A wise man said: "it takes good people to do good things. It takes bad people to do bad things. For good people to do bad things it takes religion".
Is it any wonder why the world thinks Americans are stupid? Our citizenry act like religion is a sports team to which you be eternally loyal. You're right, I can't stop you from believing in Santa Claus ... err... god... but you can't stop me from giving you my pity.
The world is going to think we're more than stupid if we don't raise the debt ceiling.
Einstein believed the world and the universe was created by God, all intricacies, from sub-atomic particles, to solar systems and galaxies, in his perspective, was improbable if not impossible for all of that fall into place by chance, and have such strict laws that interact perfectly with each other.
Science today seems to want to disprove God, when many scientists are believers of one thing or another. Most people say that they don't believe facts without Proof, most theories out there governing the Big Bang, or Evolution are just that Theories, and have no undeniable proof that shows that those events were not guided by God.
Christians who say the world is only 10,000 years old, and created in 6 days are also misguided (misled as prophesied by Jesus). When it says in Genesis, that the universe was created in 6 days, why do we assume that its 6 earth revolutions, when the earth was not even created yet? Both sides "Big Religion", and "Science based Atheism", are simply there to confuse the masses to fight against each other. Which is what everyone does and have done for generations.
Truth is God exists, the greatest minds in history believed that to be true. Science doesn't have all the answers, and don't believe all what big church has to say. Look in the bible, Jesus said most will be misled, judge the tree by the fruit my friends.
Science doesn't want anything. Some small portion of scientists may want that, most don't care and just want to do science.
"Einstein believed the world and the universe was created by God"
the bible doesn't exist...except in some edited "version"..so why do you continually use it as a base of knowledge?
You'd think god wouldn't need a biillboard to show he exists. I would expect atleast something spectacular. Imagine believing in god is down to billboard advertisong. God has been reduced to the same level as jeans, food and shoes.
God has always been a product.
How about a billboard materializing out of thin air with god's personal message to us? That would be a walk in the park for god and all atheists would be converted.
where did this 'he' come from? you know it's not true, so change the language and you change the whole discussion. as to billboards and advertising, why not just put up an ad that says
Jeanesis 1:1 One size fits all.
How anybody can possibly believe that the earth is only 6000 years old is beyond understanding. Not even lack of education can be excuse for that.
There's LOTS of science that points to a young earth.
If lots = none.
There is NO science that points to a "young earth". Liar.
What is your idea of young?
Nonsense. If you've ever been to the Grand Canyon or caverns you'd likely know better.
I've been to the grand canyon. The world has to be old for all that water to dry up! 🙂
It's not just the drying-up that is impressive. Imagine how long it took for the hundreds of layers of different sediment to be originally deposited.
Perhaps you don't understand science ? If you consider the Old Testament a science book then I have to tell you that you are wrong.
Good ahead Topher, educate us. I'm betting you won't even attempt to provide support for your claim.
Diamonds. Comets. Amount of sea salt. Age of stars. Moon. Just some of the things that point to a young earth.
"Diamonds. Comets. Amount of sea salt. Age of stars. Moon. Just some of the things that point to a young earth.'
Get serious. Most carbon dating methods bring figures of hundreds of thousands to millions of years old.
"Get serious. Most carbon dating methods bring figures of hundreds of thousands to millions of years old."
Carbon dating does no such thing.
Topher, you are either a troll or never in your life opened a science book.
Another possibility is you got brainwashed at a very early age to believe such nonsense like a 6000 year old earth.
Topher, as usual, you merely throw out (up?) statements you want us to believe just because you utter them, much like we're expected to believe The Babble just because a bunch of people say we should. Why do you think diamonds, comets, etc. support your claim? What's the science underpinning your claims? Or do you just believe it because some christian website said you should?
"Observer, Carbon dating does no such thing.'
You are correct. I should have said it was radiometric dating.
#1 Very Little Sediment on the Seafloor
#2 Bent Rock Layers
#3 Soft Tissue in Fossils
#4 Faint Sun Paradox
#5 Rapidly Decaying Magnetic Field
#6 Helium in Radioactive Rocks
#7 Carbon-14 in Fossils, Coal, and Diamonds
#8 Short-Lived Comets
#9 Very Little Salt in the Sea
#10 DNA in “Ancient” Bacteria
Expand on any one of theses, Topher.
I wouldn't do them justice. Simple google search will help you out.
Cool Topher, you just showed us you can copy and paste text from one place to another. Now that this is accomplished explain your points in more detail.
Carbon-14 dating can only work for materials less than 60,000 years old. Try again.
I'd like to take you seriously, Topher. And rather than see you ridiculed I'd rather see you learn. Let's look at 10. What exactly are you talking about here?
Topher, google "Specific Creationist Arguments" and get back to us when have read the material by Matson and understand each point. I don't expect to hear from you. Oh, you might want to read the stuff at liesingenesis about which arguments creationists shouldn't use.
I think Topher is just bitter and angry at the "F" he received on his biology exam and doesn't think teachers and scientists should push their peer reviewed, tested and verified science on people who don't want to do all that kind of hard work and labor intensive research but want to draw their own conclusions about the origins of the universe anyway...
Serious people, I'm really curious how somebody comes to believe such humbug. Lack of education alone can't be the reason because even fairly educated people are not immune against such beliefs.
Hello! Topher! Where are you? Hiding again? Coward.
not only 6000 years ago, they have a date (sometime in october) and the exact time (like 3pm or somthing)!
Right after breakfast but before the three-martini lunch.
Why do people care about other people so much? So what if someone doesn't believe in God? If it doesn't affect you, just let it go. If they think I'm going to hell, fine. I don't care. I don't need to be saved. I need you to mind your own business. Worry about your own family and let me raise mine. As long as I'm a good person and my kids are good people, who cares? I'd rather be a kind person who does charitable things than a nosy jerk who yells insults at others.
because everyone agreeing with them reinforces in their diseased little minds that they are correct
I agree with you as long as those people don't try to interfere with other people's life. However, creationists are not just keeping their belief to themselves but try to get their weird beliefs establish in school curriculums.
Silly, silly Christians... I am going to get into the business of selling bridges. Obviously, there are a lot of misguided and confused people out there who believe in fairy tales. Sitting ducks just waiting for the church to prey on you. No thanks.
If this 'god' you speak of doesn't appreciate, value or honor some of the finest human beings ever to walk the earth...then he doesn't deserve a minute of my time, in this life or the next.
Religion was invented so creepy old guys could hide behind closed doors with prepubescent boys and nobody would question what was going on.
Give them their credit, it worked for 3,000 or so years. Now I guess they'll all just have to become gym teachers.
Billboard wars? Ok...
"polls showed that 46% of Americans believed in creationism, 32% believed in evolution guided by God, and 15% believed in atheistic evolution."
...polls also show that 100% of Americans believe first and foremost in "freedom of their rights...freedom of choice....freedom of their will....freedom of their 'way of life'...freedom of their 'religion' or 'atheism'.
...polls also show that 100% of all nations and religions believe in their 'FREEDOM".
Did you know that there is a self-proclaimed 'god' that believes in "freedom of self-will, self-rights"?
....his name is Satan
He believes that it is RIGHT (a right) for one to be free to do one's own will, to establish and define what is "good and evil" for one's own desires....he believes in serving and magnifying the 'self' (XES).
Therefore, one either disobeys the One Creator so as to think that one is free to do his own will (self proclaimed freedom)....or one serves in obedience the Will of the One Creator God, Who will pass judgement.
You cannot escape this Truth.
And it is Only Jesus Christ, Son of the One True Creator, that will rule according to , and in obedience to, the Will of the Father.
...but many will weep and clench their teeth in hot anger when their "freedom" will be no more.
Thor does not approve.
too long.. too much BS.. too much unnecessary capitalization..
more unsupportable claims and proxy threats by the pious
johnny boy....fvck your and your petty pr1ck god
Must be nice to be all knowing like you.
Satan. Does. Not. Exist.
Is this that same creator that sent himself, in the form of his son, to be tortured and killed, to save us from himself? Whoa.
If you believe in evolution then you know that it takes an incredibly long time for the smallest changes to occur due to random mutations that just happen to be beneficial. Scientific evidence does not support chimpanzees becoming modern human beings as quickly as they would have had to. God, the ultimate scientist, created man in His image.
You think millions and millions of years is too fast?
If man is created in God's image then why are we not also invisible?
...and able to create anything we want out of nothing?
The Mormons finally addressed that one. Their version of "God" is flesh and bone - waaaaaay out in space somewhere!
I think you're better off leaving science to actual scientists, m'kay?
Well get it right first, evolution doesn't think that Humans came from Chimpanzees, it says they came from a common ancestor and the two branched off. Also, Evolution is no longer considered a theory but scientific fact. An interesting bit of evidence supporting evolution is that each species has a different type of head lice genetically that affects their hair. And the ones on your head are different genetically to the ones that affect another creatures, however, the the ones that affect pubic hair in humans is genetically identical to gorilla lice. Meaning there was once a time when partially hairy humans were still banging species that became Apes today...FACT
-the only thing you've shown us is how little you know of evolution. Typical. Change can happen both quickly or over long periods of time in evolution. Mutations can be beneficial, harmful, or neutral. It depends on the environment an organism finds itself in, which is why selective pressure mechanisms drive evolution, not random mutations. Yes, there is no scientific evidence that says chimpanzees become modern humans since evolution never claimed that anyway. Evolution never says one organism morphs into another. Humans and chimps are two completely different species in the same primate family, they simply share a common ancestor. Genetic evidence has confirmed it. There are many species of primates. Chimps don't turn into humans, humans don't turn into chimps. Species don't transform into others. Humans are mammals and part of the animal kingdom. Saying god created man in his image is the same as saying your god is a primate. No one "believe" in evolution since there is observable evidence to study. Theories are merely explanations. They explain facts we already observe. You have to first gather facts and data before you can explain them in a theory. Thus, no belief.
"...with 40% to 47% of Americans surveyed saying they believed that God created humans in their present form at one point within the past 10,000 years."
Could this have anything to do with why America's youth has been scoring so poorly on math and science exams when compared with the youth of most of the world's developed nations?
I might just take them seriously if they showed me one ouce of proof that We are wrong. Thing is – we never claimed to be right about anything – atheists simply see no reason to believe their claims. The absense of a belief – is not a belief.