Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Atheist billboard taken down

The Freedom from Religion Foundation erected the above billboard in Rancho Cucamonga, in San Bernardino County, California. It was supposed to be in place through January.

A bunch of christianist wingnuts, fearful that their jealous little god would be offended, complained and whined and cried and finally the General Outdoor Advertising sign company took it down.

The administrator of the First Baptist Church of Rancho Cucamonga, Judy Rooze, was very happy. She thought the sign was "unsettling." She said, "I understand people have freedom of speech, but this is taking it too far. It's very jarring."

Annie Laurie Gaylor, co-president of the Freedom from Religion Foundation, was not happy that the General Outdoor sign company broke their contract, even if they did promise to refund the money that the foundation paid for the sign.

Gaylor said that the sign's inspiration came from John Lennon's song, "Imagine." It was intended to provoke discussion and also to recruit new members for the foundation. Gaylor thought this kind of censorship was inappropriate, that religious viewpoints are aired all the time but atheists and agnostics are shut out of the marketplace. "There should be some balance," she said.

Gaylor's right and Rooze is wrong. Whether you agree with the Freedom from Religion Foundation or not is irrelevant. This IS a matter of free speech. Just because a billboard offends some religious people should have no bearing on the matter at all. Freedom of speech means the freedom to offend.

And those wingnuts who complained and whined and cried should be very careful. What's good for the goose is good for the gander, so they say. If the Freedom from Religion Foundation cannot put up their billboard, than billboards promoting religion must be dissallowed also.

In fact, we've got a ton of them in the community where I live, consisting of pithy little "god" comments and a bible verse. Very unsettling. Very jarring.

Take the damn things down, now!

And, so far as Rancho Cucamonga goes, the Freedom from Religion Foundation should file suit immediately against General Outdoor Advertising for interfering with their right of free speech.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My sermon for Thanksgiving:
I would like to see a successful law suit that does give equal rights to opposing views re religion. I think religion is a person’s choice and should be between a person and God. Everything in the various Bibles attest to a belief that God is everywhere, all powerful, all knowing, etc. That kind of God does not need people interpreting for God. If God could create the world in six days and then rest, he can also make changes, visit at will, direct surrogates, etc. He could create His own wealth, if needed. He doesn’t need TV evangelists to spend and raise money to be distributed to friends. If people wish to build an edifice to do honor or whatever, it should be paid for by those wanting and using it. Once we deny such powers, we surrender God’s power to humans. History shows us that many are corrupt and self serving. There is no evidence that only the USA is favored by God. If God created everything, He will decide what will be and will not be. The Christian nuts have stripped God of His powers and assumed them for themselves. They seem to believe that God did not rest but abdicated His role as creator. That is not very intelligent. Errors can happen, refinements can be made. God can change His mind and recreate. He can direct Darwin to his research if he wants people to have more input. He could also have made it impossible for Darwin to develop his theories. All things are possible for God.
For those that do not believe, God could change them too, if He wanted to. How about stopping the debate and let people make their own decisions as to what they believe. We should all be free to believe as we wish, as long as we do not impose our views on others. Live according to the code you find consistent with your own belief. We have laws to control deviant behavior. We rarely see a lightening bolt punish evil doers. If you do not want abortions, don’t get pregnant. Mind your own business and work toward helping others cope with their problems. I suspect that would please people and their God.
Be thankful we have all the good we have, regardless of the source.
Bob Poris

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