What are your thoughts on this billboard idea?

Comment by archaeopteryx on March 21, 2012 at 1:17am


This was posted by SteveInCo a few hours ago. I think it's a great video, and goes a long way to explain the offense that Theists take when we say we don't share their beliefs:


"Darkmatter2525 has a theory that people take attacks on their god personally because their god is really just a projection of their own personality."

I have read post after post on this site about those who have been personally offended by the expression of another that they are atheist, while you and I both know it should be no more offensive that a Redhead being told by a Blonde, "Hi, I'm blonde!" Instead of, "Glad to meet you," atheists get, "Go away!"

Nothing is going to deconvert a theist. The best anyone can hope for, is to start them thinking, which could, but doesn't necessarily, lead to a re-examination of their belief systems.

To me, "Good Without God" satisfies what I have found to be one of the major objections of theists to atheism, and that is that we get our moral systems from the Bible. You and I both know that that isn't true, or it would be legal to stone that neighbor who mows his lawn at 7 AM Sunday morning, forcing me to get up on the wrong side of the floor.

My point is, that the best approach is to inform without offending, and for a definition of offending, I again suggest viewing the video above.

pax vobiscum,

Comment by John Kelly on March 21, 2012 at 2:29am

Archaeopteryx, Darkmatter2525 is like crack for me.  I actually really liked this clip when I ran into it a while back.

Good without God does do that, but you have to use the whole argument which won't fit on a billboard.  Without the why, the reader fills in the why. Simply saying it doesn't get the point across that there is an evolutionary aspect to morality.  But they can once a dialogue gets going, and I think it does satisfy a major objection.  I have even used it with my brother.  I find it incomplete, but it is enough to take on the challenge.  I see Good without God as step 3, first being why one is an atheist, second why antitheists believe what they do, and then third why religion needs not be there for morality to be present.

Comment by Shabaka Tecumseh on March 21, 2012 at 7:01am

My thought is that you were thinking when you included the non white family billboard.

Comment by archaeopteryx on March 21, 2012 at 9:59am

@John - all I can say for certain is that whatever is chosen, if it can even remotely be perceived as confrontational, you've lost your target audience.

Comment by Dylan Block on March 21, 2012 at 11:22am

I've always thought posting advertisements for Atheism was weird. I just can't help but feel like those Evangelical Christian churches that try to sell you their religion with big ads and over the top sermons. I'm of the opinion that we don't advertise Atheism and don't make a big deal of it; just be a good person and if people ask you about religion simply say, "I'm an Atheist." That will do more good than any advertisement ever will.

Comment by John Kelly on March 21, 2012 at 2:20pm

Dylan, my take on mass communication is that it is important and effective.  This is the reason why churches and businesses do it.  The problem with evangelical churches, is not that they advertise themselves, it is that they are teaching something contrary to reality. On top of that, they exploit peoples emotional vulnerability. 

Archeopteryx, that is pretty true, so we really need to make sure we are minimizing it, because although we are targeting groups, we are also targeting individuals.  More people will have a shot at responding positively if we make sure to avoid excess appearances of being confrontational.  But some people are complete lost causes.

Comment by Scott Howard on March 21, 2012 at 5:55pm
How about if we focused on the unbelievers and the doubters? Make it a "we understand where you are" type message.
Comment by Shabaka Tecumseh on March 21, 2012 at 6:18pm

A billboard of another stripe...OMG does it ever end?


Comment by Scott Howard on March 21, 2012 at 8:45pm
I keep having this image of Charleton Heston in the last scene in Planet Of The Apes, kneeling on the beach in front of a burned out church screaming, "GOD...DAMN..YOU..TO..HELL!!!"

Too extreme?
Comment by archaeopteryx on March 21, 2012 at 9:17pm

(Statue of Liberty, Scott --:-$ don't tell anyone shh!)


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