December 6, 2017 – I-25 runs north-south cutting through Cheyenne, Denver and Albuquerque. There are miles where you do not see billboards advertising just about anything you could imagine. So imagine the surprise of drivers when they saw a billboard advertising from the American Atheists.
Now it is important to me that the atheist community use their voice to help fight for the constitutional separation of church and state. It is important to see atheists fight the discrimination heaved upon us by non-believers. It is important to see atheists fight against the onslaught of arguments hoisted by believers that their god somehow exists and we are the ones who will go to hell in a handbasket.
I enjoy watching YouTube videos by Dark Matter 2525 and Bionic Dance laying waste to the Evangelical Christians extremists who are attempting to lay waste to the atheists. So it was with great pleasure when I saw a picture of the billboards put up by the American Atheists.
The Albuquerque billboard reads “Just Skip Church – It’s All Fake News.” Two others can be seen in the Dallas/ Ft. Worth area.
In 2015 the message seen in Colorado was “Go Ahead And Skip Church! Just Be Good For Goodness’ Sake – Happy Holidays.”
Of course, there are a number of ministers who are quite upset with the idea that their messages of faith would be considered “fake news.” Pastor Richard Mansfield of Albuquerque believes that the billboard is a slap in the face of Christians. Nick Fish, National Program Director of the American Atheists told KOB-TV that the billboards are there to start the conversation, that there are millions of non-believers in the United States.
In fact, there are some 27 religious holidays of the world’s seven major religions from November 1 to January 7, the Orthodox Christian Christmas. This does not include the holidays of minor religions, of the pagan religions and secular holidays, usually ending with the Chinese New Year.
Personally, I see the humor in the billboards, parodying our illustrious president’s claim of CNN, NBC and others as “fake news.” I would not be surprised if he tweets that the billboards are an attack on Christianity.
Exit polls showed that Evangelical Christians voted overwhelmingly for Donald Trump in 2016. During his campaign, he claimed that any news report that was negative towards him or his minions was “fake news.” It continues to this day. If the ECs don’t get the joke, I am sorry, but I found the billboard funny.
The arguments between Christians and non-believers are infinite in scope. There seems to be a new video cropping up on YouTube almost hourly. Most carry the same theme – “Atheists, prove God does not exist,” though proof is required to the positive claim, that God does exist.
I am not a radical atheist by any means. I do not ridicule people for wishing me a Merry Christmas or wishing that I have a blessed day. I will leave the small skirmishes to others. I tend to look at the bigger picture from a political vantage point. I am more afraid of the United States becoming a theocracy under the Trump/Pence administration. I am afraid that the wall of separation is collapsing.
According to the Pew Research Center, the number of those “unaffiliated” with any church has reached 22.2 percent in 2014, representing a 67% increase since 2007, while those claiming atheism or agnosticism was closer to 7.1 percent, growing at a rate of 150%. Meanwhile, the Christian faiths are losing ground, though still the majority belief. (Atheism and Agnosticism are considered part of the “unaffiliated” population in the Pew study.)
In April 2017, Pew published an article asking if more education meant less religion. The simple answer is yes. The more complex answer includes a large percentage of college-educated women and men who still believe in a god. Yet 11 percent of college graduates affiliate themselves with atheism or agnosticism, compared to 4 percent of high school graduates.
Now I am not saying that Evangelicals are stupid; they are not as a whole. They just take things at faith value and not contend with critical thinking, for if they did they may see the joke and engage in the conversation.