Atheist bus ads roll in London today: massive success

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224 Responses to “Atheist bus ads roll in London today: massive success”

  1. JDavid says:

    @IamInnocent #43-

    Yes, I’m largely in the same boat. I have issues with what religion tells us about God, because the bible, or any other text was written so long ago, to such primitive people. I feel it simply doesn’t apply in describing the God experience to the modern world. “God” whatever that means, laid out a framework that those primitive people could understand. But, along the line that account has been tampered with, altered and bastardized to suit the needs of man…mostly to control other men.

    I don’t believe that was the original event or intention of “God”.

    These atheists seem to have a deep seated need to force their perspective as much if not more then the religious fundamentalists (I haven’t seen any God bus ads).

    It’s much more about hating the people of fundamentalist religious beliefs then it is a belief in “God”. This isn’t about God. It’s about religion and those who would force it upon those who don’t want it.

    God and whether or not you believe it is of very little consequence to these “atheists”. It’s about the non tolerance of fundamentalists. What the atheists don’t realize is they are just as venomous and combative to force their views upon the public.

    How about both sides just shut the fuck up, let people believe what they want, and keep it to yourselves.

  2. barjoe says:

    Nice advertisement with a pleasing message and an intriguing tag line (probably?).
    Much better propaganda than the hateful “you’ll burn in hell if you don’t believe” message they say they were reacting to.
    Us Christians had better get our act together.

  3. donnykebab says:

    Hallelujah!

  4. bnt says:

    I wish people would actually read the definition of Agnosticism. Use Wikipedia if you must, the page there is pretty good, and includes the relevant quotes from the inventor of the concept (T H Huxley). (Whether you buy the “recently suggested variations” there is up to you. I don’t see the point, since they cover no new ground, so I go straight back to Huxley, who identified the need for a new word.)

    – It is not a statement of what you know. It is a statement of what you believe about the question “is there a god?”
    – It does not mean “I don’t know whether there’s a god”. No-one knows the answer, though many think the answer is “yes”. Not having a clear belief either way does not make one an Agnostic.
    – It is a statement of whether you think the question can be answered. An Agnostic thinks that it can never be answered.
    – Conversely, the atheists you hear about, these days, think the question can potentially be answered, and that it’s (essentially) a scientific question.
    – Note that they do not claim that the answer is “no” – very few people ever did. Yes, preachers claim that’s what atheism is, but they’re hardly objective, are they? There’s no evidence that the answer is “no”, but there’s no evidence that the answer is “yes”, either.

    Sorry to go on like this, but I’m getting a little annoyed with all those people saying “I don’t know, so I’m Agnostic”. Not knowing is the natural state of affairs in questions like these, it’s nothing special and doesn’t need a label! If you don’t have faith in any god(s), you’re an atheist – it’s that simple!

  5. Johne Cook says:

    These ads seem to be in better taste than many or most I’ve seen from Christians. Many of ‘our’ ads seem clumsy at best or flat-out offensive at worst. That’s sad. That’s inexcusable.

    With that said, I’m personally convicted by something Penn Jillette said. I first ran across this small video clip maybe a month ago, and it has been rolling around in my head ever since. As a respectful fellow, I’ve adopted a low-key stance of lifestyle evangelism instead of more active proselytizing on the theory that people will respect what they see one live instead of what one says. But Penn’s short clip here has prompted me to rethink that stance. Is it possible that what I intended as respect for another’s personal space can be correctly construed as hatred for them by inaction?

    http://www.breitbart.tv/?p=245243

    “I’ve always said I don’t respect people who don’t proselytize. I don’t respect that at all. If you believe that there’s a heaven and hell, and people could be going to hell, and not getting eternal life, or whatever, and you think it’s not really worth telling them this because it could be socially awkward, and atheists who think people shouldn’t proselytize, just leave me alone, keep it to yourself… How much do you have to hate somebody to not proselytize? How much do you have to hate somebody to believe that everlasting life is possible and not tell them that?”

    I think Penn has a point there. However, the more I think about it, I think the key is in the delivery, in the dialogue.

    Looking at many of the Christians I know personally, I’m embarrassed. I see more harm being done than good. As the Penny Arcade guys have so cleverly put it, “Jesus says ‘Don’t be a dick.’” I’d get that t-shirt if I didn’t think I’d spend more time explaining it to fellow Christians than non-Christians.

    Getting back to this campaign, I think polite ad campaigns (on all sides) are fine. I think it is appropriate to be ‘one polite person living life right.’ I think we can all aspire to be good people, and that it’s ok to have that deep disagreement if we are going to be genuine and polite and kind and considerate in the process. Who wouldn’t at least entertain an opposing viewpoint if it were presented in a ‘polite, honest, sane’ fashion?

  6. Takuan says:

    fire the religio-fascist SOB.

    • Antinous / Moderator says:

      Letting drivers decide which bus they’ll drive that day based on whether or not they agree with the advertising is a very slippery slope.

  7. Xopher says:

    Takuan, careful. Remember, you’ve been dissing them for cannibalism.

    Oh, but you’re a mollusk. I forgot. Carry on.

  8. Roy Trumbull says:

    The ad is sort of a paraphrase of Hillel. When asked to explain all of Jeudaism while standing on one foot, he responded: “What is hateful to thyself do not do to another. That is the whole Law, the rest is Commentary.”

  9. Cpt. Tim says:

    “things will be so hard-scrabble soon that sensible priorities will return.”

    i dunno. i think things were pretty hard scrabble during the inquisition.

  10. Mindpowered says:

    This thread seems to have brought out the better than thou,in some posters.

    Quotes about “Unthinking hordes” and “retarded” and “puffed egos” suggest that there are people who have been very personally shaken by this, and hence are not able to see it for the gentle corrective it is.

    As one who believes in a higher power, but not one defined by god, I can see there is no harm in expressing such a sentiment.

    Moreover, given that there is a militant strain of Christianity which has placed an ad previously,it is simply a well timed gesture.

    “Jesus Said ads running on London buses in June 2008. These ads displayed the URL of a website which stated that non-Christians “will be condemned to everlasting separation from God and then you spend all eternity in torment in hell … Jesus spoke about this as a lake of fire prepared for the devil”. Our rational slogan will hopefully reassure anyone who has been scared by this kind of evangelism.”

    It’s pretty obvious, some posters didn’t bother to read the article and simply grandstanded for their own motives.

    • Antinous says:

      “Jesus Said ads running on London buses in June 2008. These ads displayed the URL of a website which stated that non-Christians “will be condemned to everlasting separation from God and then you spend all eternity in torment in hell … Jesus spoke about this as a lake of fire prepared for the devil”.

      I’m not convinced that having to remember and go to a website constitutes provocation, however obnoxious the website content. If otherwise innocent ads give a website address that contains sexual imagery, should we then be subjected to a counter-campaign of celibacy ads on the sides of buses? Seriously, could we just not have any ads on buses? Note to self: stop leaving house.

  11. Teller says:

    #178: Nothing but net.

  12. Ito Kagehisa says:

    On reading the linked article, I see Ariane Sherine quoting Richard Dawkins:

    As Richard Dawkins states in The God Delusion, saying “there’s no God” is taking a “faith” position. He writes: “Atheists do not have faith; and reason alone could not propel one to total conviction that anything definitely does not exist”. His choice of words in the book is “almost certainly”; but while this is closer to what most atheists believe, “probably” is shorter and catchier, which is helpful for advertising. I also think the word is more lighthearted, and somehow makes the message more positive.

    It seems we need not argue over Dawkins’ sentiments or the reason that “probably” was used. Just read the fine article.

    As a pantheist, I find all these things a bit absurd, but I have to applaud the bus campaign. Well done!

  13. Anonymous says:

    Recommended advertisements for Christian organizations:

    “Jesus probably loves you”.

    “For the probable God probably loved the World so, that he gave his probably only begotten son that whoever believeth in him should probably not perish but probably have everlasting life.”

  14. Xopher says:

    But the Christian groups they’re opposing are absolutely certain.

    Of course, in my experience absolute certainty has a very high correlation with being wrong.

    • Antinous says:

      Of course, in my experience absolute certainty has a very high correlation with being wrong.

      There was a study a decade or so ago that demonstrated that there was an inverse relationship between competence and confidence. Of course, anyone who’s ever had a boss already knows that.

  15. Tom Hale says:

    I wish I hadn’t read the article (I think it was on BB) about a year ago that theorized that as time passes, it becomes more and more likely that we all actually exist in a virtual world. The article said that by 2050, computers should be advanced enough that one (or a bank of them) would be powerful enough to simulate a world population’s thought processes, memory, and sensory input.

    There’s something for you ponder as you try to get to sleep tonight.

  16. Cpt. Tim says:

    #101

    right on.

  17. buddy66 says:

    Xopher,

    Excellent reply to J. Cook. You are a civil man.

    “It is, I admit, dangerous for me not to have any friends who oppose same-sex marriage.”

    Well, I oppose all marriages. I could be half a friend, if you’d like.

  18. Germanico says:

    Tomorrow in the news: “800 buses vandalized in England.”

  19. Bugs says:

    I spent a while exploring the group’s site and read that they had to include “probably” or they wouldn’t have been allowed to run the advert. I’m not sure what grounds it would’ve been denied on… religious intolerance maybe?

    Anyway, I donated to the campaign and am cackling with glee at the thought of seeing the buses in the next few days!

    I know that the advert seems petty and won’t acheive any “converts”; I don’t really want it to. In Britain we’re used to having public places and vehicles plastered with adverts promoting Christianity, reminding us that we’re incomplete, bad or off to hell if we don’t believe. It’s bloody brilliant to see an alternative voice for once, a public declaration that not believing is a valid choice that doesn’t mean we’re less worthy as people.

  20. Takuan says:

    precisssely

  21. fatuousplatitudes says:

    Yea, yea, yea!
    That’s my money being used!
    Probably…

    Glad to see that the Atheistic Campaign is working

  22. Orchestra Spy says:

    God doesn’t change my life, but I can feel that my life is observed. He this, he that, what’s with all this he stuff? It seems more appropriate. JC was a he though.

  23. dalesd says:

    #89 “Besides, even if there is a god. Which one is the right one? Ganesh? Thor? Isis? Quetzalcoatl? Baal? Jehova? Marduk?”

    I like to say, “You tell me why all those *other* gods don’t exist, then I’ll tell you why I think yours doesn’t exist.”

  24. ROSSINDETROIT says:

    Religion: None of it makes a lick of sense. This would be a damning fault if there was anything else in life that DID make a lick of sense.
    I say whatever delusion gets you through without harming others, rock on brother.

  25. buddy66 says:

    “Enemy”

    I did a radio interview many years ago with Joan Baez and her pacifist guru, Ira Sandperl. She noted how her attitude towards political confrontations changed when she followed Ira’s advice to think of and call her adversaries “opponents” instead of enemies. I began doing that myself. Damned if it doesn’t work!

    Now if I were Israeli or Palestinian….

  26. IamInnocent says:

    @JDavid:

    I can’t understand either their need to make everyone so aware of their beliefs.

  27. usonia says:

    There might be a god. There might not. Either way, there isn’t shit any of us can do about it. I believe in gravity and photons (amongst other tangible goods), and I’ve never knocked on anyone’s door to try to get them in my little belief boat. I think faith can be a beautiful thing, but I’ve never understood why some people want to throw it in everyone else’s face.

  28. sswaan says:

    Hey, now, leave the Mormons alone…I’m a proud third-generation-jack-Mormon-atheist and will defend my pretty blond cousins and my polygamist ancestors (many of whom lived to their 90s, I’ll have you know) as far as I need to.

    That said, they really should keep their noses (and money) out of other people’s marriages.

    But back to the signs on the buses…despite all this wrangling over semantics et al., I still find them heartwarming. Can’t I? Can’t I just?

  29. Cpt. Tim says:

    “Quotes about “Unthinking hordes” and “retarded” and “puffed egos” suggest…”

    i’ve been personally affected by this. but i used words like muffins, and tika masala.

    fuck i’m hungry.

  30. avraamov says:

    i hope one of the buses goes via gaza.

  31. TooGoodToCheck says:

    @AirPillo, et al.

    I think this is important.

    Not because I expect the ads to convert anyone, but because coming out of the closet is a critical step towards public acceptance.

    I’m having a bit of trouble articulating why I feel this is so important, but here’s my best attempt:

    1) for other non-believers, public atheism is a way of saying that yes, other people believe the same thing you do, and you have a community. You are neither alone nor crazy nor aberrant.

    When your mom believes in a resurrection and that you won’t be there, and there are two radio stations that you can’t flip past without being preached at, and even the most inclusive “all faiths are different paths to the same truth” message still leaves you out, it is wonderful to hear any public affirmation of atheism.

    I grew up in a religious family, and for a long long time, everyone I knew was very religious. My family and friends – functionally my entire community – was part of a very tight knit religious group. And it was honestly inconceivable to me at that time that any rational person would not believe in god. In that context, the influence of even a few people who were willing to discuss their on-belief rocked my world and changed my life. They didn’t preach or proselytize – they just showed by example that there are other ways to exist and think that don’t revolve around god.

    If those people had just taken for granted that atheism/agnosticism speaks for itself or that it shouldn’t be discussed or mentioned, my life would be a very different one. I probably could have lived my life as a closeted atheist, and I really tried so freaking hard to believe in god. I cannot describe how much better I feel now that I don’t feel obligated to try anymore.

    So, from personal experience, I will say that being open about your non-religious belief can change lives.

    2) for the believers
    It’s easy to demonize and vilify that which you don’t personally know. As long as atheists are the nameless faceless Other, it is easy to paint us as immoral, debased, evil, untrustworthy, bordering on sub-human.

    When kind, moral, helpful, competent, rational people go out into the world and confess themselves as atheists, they are doing a lot to fight that image. It’s much easier to hate on abstract atheists than it is when you know that your co-worker or your next door neighbor is an unbeliever. I would probably avoid trying to convert anyone though – we already have Christopher Hitchens and Richard Dawkins. I love them both, but their utility is primarily limited to preaching to the choir.

    ————-

    I hope you’ll all forgive me for closing this out with a quote from the bible. I don’t read it much anymore, but this was one of the two passages that kept coming back to me as I broke away from a religion that I had prayerfully yet unsuccessfully tried to believe in for so many years.

    1 Corinthians 15 (NIV)
    (14) And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. (15) More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised. (16) For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. (17) And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. (18) Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. (19) If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are to be pitied more than all men.

  32. Takuan says:

    the meme I propagate was around before any of these organized religions ,and will be around after they have all passed.

  33. Falcon_Seven says:

    I find that the reason to include the word ‘probably’ in the ad is to avoid prosecution by civil authorities based on some ridiculous ‘truth in advertising’ laws, hilarious. I also find Mr. Dawkins -as the self-appointed atheist spokesperson- to be tragically uncommitted. He states his atheist position is that the probability of the existence of God is very small -as if there is a theorem to compute this, yet he will not state flat-out, that God does not exist; because, he is still not entirely convinced -in his own mind- that he is right. So he hedges his bet against possible ‘eternal damnation’ with a single word.
    As I see it, there are only two positions to take in this ‘debate’; “I believe.” or “I don’t believe.” What I’d really like to see happen is both sides stop trying to tell those of us who really don’t care one-way-or-the-other about their beliefs, what to believe. Whether a person believes in God or not is a personal choice that is arrived at through experience, observation, and reflection. What people should respect is everyone’s right to be free from the imposition of belief -or non-belief- upon them by another and to be free from ridicule because of what they believe or don’t believe.

  34. Anonymous says:

    I am a film maker and every year I make a film, on Boxing Day itself, that I upload and email out to friends, family and colleagues. Being an atheist myself I try to create ‘alternative’ Christmas time greetings. This year I went for a comedy angle and had a local vicar getting hassle from the ASA as his poster stating that “Remember at Christmas that Jesus is the way to heaven” can’t be factually proven. This, at the time, I felt was hilariously outrageous.

    Whilst I choose to approach the same issue from the other side (having the ASA investigate the church rather the atheists) I was still amazed to see that this came true just 2 weeks later. Unbelievable.

    http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x7vcom_god-versus-the-advertising-standard_fun

  35. BritSwedeGuy says:

    Unfortunately the obvious often needs stating!

  36. Scary_UK says:

    #15, not really, he’s always said that he’d be willing to believe in god if presented by good enough evidence.

  37. Narual says:

    @34 — Are you seriously equating a *law* against the sale of alcohol on Sunday with a store *choosing* to be closed on a holiday?

    This isn’t a matter of choice, it’s a matter of laws forced through by religion.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_law

  38. Scary_UK says:

    #6 et al…

    If the ads didn’t say ‘probably’ they would most likely fall foul of the Advertising Standards Authority.

    It’s also a reference to a long running series of beer ads – ‘Carlsberg, Probably the best lager in the world

  39. Cpt. Tim says:

    133# “So he hedges his bet against possible ‘eternal damnation’ with a single word.”

    This is an incredibly insightful piece of information to make up. Except Mr. Dawkin’s explains very plainly his use of the word probably.

    I also say God probably does not exist. but i’m not bet hedging, I think if it was suddenly proved that the bible was the inerrant word of God, i would have to say that YHWH is an evil god.

    Your conclusion is largely simplistic. I’m “agnostic” about a lot of things that can’t be disproven. to use a worn example, fairy’s.

    So if i say that fairy’s probably don’t exist, would you say i’m bet hedging? Probably not, but i guess feel free to tell people what i believe for me like you’ve done with Mr. Dawkins.

  40. Simon_Gardner says:

    Falcon_Seven 0n January 6, 2009 said “There’s probably no God.” They don’t sound like they’re certain in their non-belief.

    Oh they’re certain all right. It’s just they had to insert the ‘probably’ to get past the bus company’s advertising criteria. They weren’t too happy about it but they had no choice.

  41. Cpt. Tim says:

    lets convert this to muffins. because its nicer to talk about muffins than gods.

    Say there was a prevailing belief that there was a supreme muffin that would punish you for not believing in it despite the fact that around the world there were other religions with supreme croissants supreme cupcakes, etc.

    The muffinites put up billboards and television advertising, and little pamplets, and had people on the street telling you that there really was eternal punishment in a magical oven if you didn’t accept the muffin as the one true path to salvation.

    Not only that but they try to legislate certain beliefs to try to ensure the safety of the souls of the people who don’t believe what they do (only out of concern mind you, when you get to heaven through their efforts, you’ll be with the muffin)

    one day someone puts up a sign that says “there probably isn’t a muffin.”

    Lets criticize this arrogant and obnoxious sign.

  42. Takuan says:

    I’ve nothing against mormons, I just want them to stop killing and eating people. It’s against nature.

  43. Seoulseeker says:

    “Atheism” is just the only well-understood term for the sensible outlook that there is no good reason to believe in any religion. People who think of atheists as just another religious group like fundamentalists are ignorant. It is like calling nonbelievers in ghosts a religious group and giving them a name like “aphasmists.”

    Unfortunately, because wish-fulfilling, ego-gratifying superstitions have a long tradition in every society and remain for many essential to their social identity and self-worth, and because it is only fairly recently that people in some countries gained the freedom to criticize prevailing superstitions, reasonable people find themselves in the absurd position of having to defend common sense. In a sane world, religious people would be in the minority and would be the ones generally challenged to defend their beliefs. Perhaps they would be called “arealists” because of their disregard for reality in favor of fantasies.

    People who declare themselves agnostics in the belief that they are taking the most reasonable and open-minded stance are deluding themselves and being politic. There is not an equal probability that the beliefs of religious people and “atheists” are true. Such a view is like thinking that, because we cannot disprove fairy tales, the existence of fairies is as just as likely as their being imaginary.

    Also, because of their own prejudices, religious people usually fail to recognize that there are many different religions with equal claims to validity, and their deeply held beliefs would be completely different if they had been born in a different society or family.

    There is no religion that a person growing up in the world without any religious instruction would discover on his/her own. All are belief systems designed by people to serve various human needs and purposes. With their primitive ethics and encouragement of the belief that faith justifies all manner of atrocities (particularly when inflicted on nonbelievers), religions are a great tool of evil, as has been seen repeatedly throughout history.

    Advertisements for atheism are a welcome breath of fresh air. They are a small voice of reason and sanity in a mostly insane world, where many people believe a god blesses terrorism and wars for self-serving ends.

  44. Xopher says:

    SSwaan, you’re a RECOVERING Mormon. Or maybe an ex-Mormon.

    It’s the current Mormons we think are stupid and want to make fun of and shame. The hope is that they’ll quit their stupid homophobic hate organization (calls itself a church, but so does the Westboro Baptist Church) and that eventually it will be destroyed.

    Initial thinking is that pointing out that the Book of Mormon is really stupid, obviously faked garbage written by a power-hungry racist conman who just wanted to fuck a lot of women is the way to go. If you can think of a better way to destroy the CJCLDS, advise us.

  45. Johne Cook says:

    I’ve been thinking about this all night; it amuses me when people use hate speech to show how superior they are compared to other people who use hate speech. ;)

    You can fight fire with fire, but I find that water is far more effective. Try love, people.

    This ad campaign seems innocuous to me. It reads like a polite counterpoint to an ad campaign that was less polite (and my thinking tends to run along Christian lines and not atheist lines, so this isn’t an endorsement out of some kind of favoritism).

  46. Casual_Casualty says:

    @82:”As for God, is there a group I can join who find the chances of his existence vanishingly small and, if he were found to exist, would declare him somewhat lacking in the Common Humanity department (given Gaza, tsunamis, AIDS, herpes, senile dementia et al)? Perhaps this group could sponsor some buses with “God? He’s a bit of a heartless git….”
    Amen, Mr. Dodds, Amen.

  47. aeon says:

    I wonder if the buses in cities in the Midlands will say “Allah probably doesn’t exist…”? I mean, you have to at least play lip service to multiculturalism in PC Britain.

  48. Anonymous says:

    it would be more interesting if they quoted people who are homeless or just lost their family in hurricane katrina.

  49. Xopher says:

    Buddy66, thanks. Johne has been civil all along, so I saw no reason to be rude, even if he IS my enemy (and of course I harbor some doubt as to that, as is my policy).

    And of course I meant those who oppose, shall we say, parallel marriage but not polar marriage.

    Banning all recognition of marriage as conferring any distinction on the married couple’s legal status (IBNLT taxes, hospital privileges, inheritance rights, privileged communication etc.) would be an acceptable if sub-optimal solution, especially since it would last only until the general population realized what they’ve been doing to US all these years.

    To suddenly break into sincerity, I’d be proud to count you among my friends.

  50. speedymarco says:

    Yesssssssssssss.

  51. airship says:

    I’m glad to see this campaign.

    As a thinking evangelical Christian, I believe that the best environment for the free and open discussion of my own beliefs is one that promotes free and open discussion of all beliefs.

  52. Takuan says:

    “the Book of Mormon is really stupid, obviously faked garbage written by a power-hungry racist conman who just wanted to fuck a lot of women AND ate his own parents.”

  53. Orchestra Spy says:

    lol, that’s great. It’s a good idea too, people should stop worrying, dividing. But there is a God.

  54. Pipenta says:

    What has always gotten on my nerves is that it is considered perfectly socially acceptable for Christians and members of other religions to be out and in your face about it.

    You have buildings in highly visible places with large religious logos on them and with religious slogans (including threats of damnation)in clear view. You slap a religious bumper sticker on your car. You can even put a religious symbol on a chain around your neck and wear it anywhere. And you can boorishly make pronouncements and assume that everyone else is Christian.

    But if someone so much as dares mention that they are an atheist, all hell breaks loose.

    And then the religious folks have the cheek to turn around and say that they are the ones who have the right to be offended, that they are the ones who are persecuted.

    Ha.

    And to # 59: Penn can be a very funny guy and he’s a great entertainer, but even HE would be the first to say that if you took him and his views too seriously, you’re on pretty shaky ground.

  55. Boba Fett Diop says:

    Conan: What gods do you pray to?

    Subotai: I pray to the four winds… and you?

    Conan: To Crom… but I seldom pray to him, he doesn’t listen.

    Subotai: [chuckles] What good is he then? Ah, it’s just as I’ve always said.

    Conan: He is strong! If I die, I have to go before him, and he will ask me, “What is the riddle of steel?” If I don’t know it, he will cast me out of Valhalla and laugh at me. That’s Crom, strong on his mountain!

    Subotai: Ah, my god is greater.
    Conan: [chuckles] Crom laughs at your four winds. He laughs from his mountain.

    Subotai: My god is stronger. He is the everlasting sky! Your god lives underneath him.

  56. sirk says:

    These make me smile!

  57. Mindpowered says:

    “If otherwise innocent ads give a website address that contains sexual imagery, should we then be subjected to a counter-campaign of celibacy ads on the sides of buses”

    Emm…

    Given the social context where homosexuality was criminalized, mildly pornographic books such as Lady Chatterley’s lover were banned for decades, and even now “Lads Mags” are under threat of being banned while even now the church of England is one of the largest land owners, and militant Christianity is acting as thought police, I don’t think that’s an appropriate comparison.

    I forgot to ad initially, I think they actually should have run them in Belfast, or Londonderry.

  58. AirPillo says:

    I wasn’t aware that atheism really needed advertisement.

    I imagined the logic of “witnessing” for something which is, by definition, a total lack of religion… and I had to stop to keep my head from imploding.

  59. LB says:

    I believe in god, but I agree with their message. Stop worrying about damnation and salvation and just be a better person, period.

  60. Xopher says:

    Avraamov, do you mean “they sure could use a little no-God sentiment in those parts” or “this bus deserves to be blown to flinders by an Israeli bomb/Hamas rocket”? Your comment can be read either way, so I’m just askin’.

  61. braschlosan says:

    Many of you simple cannot read
    “There’s probably no god”
    _Probably_ is not absolute. It leaves the door open for both options. This ad is not anti religion of any type. Quit making it something it isn’t.

  62. Anonymous says:

    135,000 pounds? Couldn’t they have spent that money being kind to each other and doing what they could for each other?

    Jeez.

  63. Xopher says:

    Johne…if you voted for Bush the second time, I don’t know what to say to you. And it sounds like you’re an abortion-litmus-test voter (correct me if I’m wrong), which in that election was really not imaginably positionable as “pro-Life,” unless you think only life in the womb counts; but then the only “pro-Life” people I respect at all are the “consistent pro-Life agenda” gang, who oppose abortion but also war and the death penalty.

    In addition to thousands of deaths in Iraq (and the displacement and dispossession of virtually the entire Christian community of that country), you helped cause the destruction of New Orleans, and the attendant death and suffering that entailed; and helped keep Guantanamo Bay open and the parties responsible for the Abu Ghraib abuses from being punished.

    You also voted for a president who (and whose party) was pretending to push through a federal constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman. This was a ruse to get right-wing CHINOs to vote, and they dropped it after the election, but unless you knew that, it also makes your vote an anti-marriage, anti-family (I’m sure you’ll deny this based on a narrower definition of ‘family’ than I use) vote, and a vote against human rights.

    These are some of the things you pass by as “the rest.” I think you need to think about “the rest,” and weigh it against the things you got, to make a sound ethical judgement.

    It may be that you’ve now repented of your 2004 vote. If not, you are my enemy, because in addition to being a gay man who wants to be married someday (and I even have someone in mind, thank you), I am a person who cares about strangers; opposes the affliction of widows and orphans; believes veterans should be treated with respect and given good medical care for injuries sustained in war (whether the war was justified or not); thinks people in other countries have as much right to live as people in our country; thinks actual living people have rights, not just fetuses; opposes aggressive war, and believes that America should be just, kind, and humble. You voted against me on all those things.

    That doesn’t mean you aren’t worth talking to, though it makes it less likely that you are. Let me ask you this: why on Earth should YOUR personal beliefs be privileged over mine, or over long-standing principles of law? In particular, why do you think the state should enforce YOUR definition of marriage (assuming you do think so)?

    Coherent answers to those would be very interesting to read.

  64. Falcon_Seven says:

    There’s probably no God.
    They don’t sound like they’re certain in their non-belief.

  65. padster123 says:

    Wonderful.

    The fightback starts (well, continues) here.

  66. technogeek says:

    I dunno. I find militant/evangelistic agnosticism as annoying as militant/evangelistic practice of any other religious belief. I don’t consider the ads any more unreasonable than similar arguments in the other direction, but I don’t think they’re any better either.

    As long as folks have the freedom to practice their beliefs — but stop short of the point of trying to impose those beliefs on others — I’m happy. After all, most belief systems really boil down to “Be kind to each other; the rest is commentary.” And, yes, agnosticism and atheism are legitimate religious beliefs. (Which is one of my ongoing problems with the Boy Scouts of America, but that’s a different rant.)

    Myself? I’m an strongly agnostic theist. I don’t know, I don’t think anyone else really knows, I can’t conceive of any evidence that would convince me, and I don’t think it matters because anything large and powerful enough to be considered a deity would simply be too large and powerful to be concerned with us individual atoms.

    Your mileage, of course, will vary.

  67. buddy66 says:

    Can we agnostics and secular whatevers get a mini bus?

  68. Orchestra Spy says:

    @ 105

    “We are one mirror, split up into pieces”

    -Project Pitchfork

  69. Purly says:

    I wish everyone on both ends of the debate would stop making the debate relevant.

  70. sswaan says:

    I hadn’t seen that quote before. It made me admire Katharine Hepburn even more.

  71. jphilby says:

    All rumors to the contrary … Eric Clapton is NOT dead.

  72. maturin says:

    Raising money to make public statements about their opinion about God and concluding with a statement telling other people how to go about their lives.
    Yes….this is a real step away from mainstream religion.

  73. Trent Hawkins says:

    If there ever is going to be an Atheist Bible, the cover should read “Don’t Panic”.

  74. technogeek says:

    #71: No, a minibus would be used for the followers of Small Gods (which, by the way, is definitely worth reading if you haven’t gotten to it yet. Pratchett is one of the best social satirists now practicing, and more importantly he’s one heck of a storyteller.)

  75. Xeno says:

    Thank god for Atheism!

  76. Anonymous says:

    I’m sick of religious (or anti-religious) marketing in general. I’d rather see it on people, not painted on signs, what is believed, or not believed. Like sports fans are annoying to me, other fans are no different. These ads cheapen the beliefs, in my opinion.

  77. Takuan says:

    hummph, I note that formal charges of bigamy have been laid at Bountiful. We shall see. I amend my previous statement ot include the desire the mormons cease their promsicuous,polygamist breeding programs as well and content themselves with the normal number of elderly grandparent briskets as the rest of us. Such gluttony is unbecoming.

  78. Paul says:

    @Falcon Seven

    If they said “There is no god” then that would be belief. Most people who would be described as atheists are more “strong agnostics”, such as myself, i.e. we don’t see how you can prove it either way at the moment.

    To say that there is no god would be an assertion of a fact without any evidence (which would be pretty hard to come by), i.e. the very definition of faith.

    Personally I don’t think there is a god, but I can’t prove it, I simply see no reason to believe that there is one, but I can’t rule it out. I used to be a very believing catholic, but now I’m an atheist/strong-agnostic for wont of a better term. I’ve no problem with people believing whatever they want so long as they don’t use it as an excuse to harm others and don’t mind me believing what I do.

    These bus adverts should be placed in context: for the last few years a number of churches have been running ads on busses and billboards, normally for something called the Alpha Course (a kind of theology-lite course for people curious about christianity). These ads are just a counter-point to those. if we are going to live in a world where people can advertise their god, I don’t see why other people shouldn’t be able to put their opinion forward.

    Besides, it all makes a pleasant change from the usual ads for perfumes or rubbish films.

    Paul

  79. Anonymous says:

    Oh the irony. Use fanaticism against fanaticism … yuck, how I hate fanatic (non-)religious freaks.

  80. MarlboroTestMonkey7 says:

    As always, it’s the exposure of the idea that matters, thus Doubt is implanted in the mind of the unbelievers or better, in the mind of those who did not mind.

    The plan progresses as expected.

    Monkey out.

  81. Anonymous says:

    Gee, now that I’ve seen it on a bus, I really do believe there is no God!

  82. neurolux says:

    I don’t get people seeing this ad as bullying or proselytizing. It seems like a gentle hug for those who are starting to doubt their religion.

  83. howaboutthisdangit says:

    Maybe, just maybe, people will start to leave dogma and unfounded beliefs behind, though I have doubts. Religion itself keeps evolving, as the “unchanging” word of God has slowly changed over the years, to keep pace and keep those sheep penned.

  84. Antinous / Moderator says:

    Good luck with the bullet hole in your foot.

  85. Anonymous says:

    The campaign is about exposure, not promoting a new idea.

  86. Mojave says:

    I agree…what’s up with the “probably”…?
    There. Is. No. God.
    Just state the obvious and move on.

  87. Cpt. Tim says:

    personally i would put quotes on buses with all the biblical rules in favor of slavery, including its continued acceptance of it into the new testament. It would serve as an example that religion tends to take its moral cues from the zeitgeist, rather than being morally timeless in its own right.

    • Antinous says:

      religion tends to take its moral cues from the zeitgeist, rather than being morally timeless in its own right.

      New occasions bring new duties
      Time makes ancient good uncouth
      They must upward still and onward
      Who would keep abreast of truth

      - From Once to Every Man and Nation, a Christian hymn. At least the lyricist had some common sense even if nobody pays much attention to it.

  88. slojason says:

    #35 – how about deletes?

    I think Bill Maher said it best…”Faith means making a virtue out of not thinking”

  89. chenry says:

    @ #5
    I’m an atheist, I think the reason they said “probably” is because it comes off as arrogant to say “definitely”. I can’t claim to know everything. Claiming that I know the unprovable is basically faith. You can’t claim that there is beyond a shadow of a doubt no God, just like you can’t prove there is one. To believe in something fully without proof is… well. Religion.

  90. Teller says:

    Interesting that the word itself is a reaction to theism. Is there not a purer word for this system of thought?

  91. Meredith says:

    I’m an atheist, but I’ve always felt alone in my beliefs. It’s not a choice I make, it’s part of me I must accept. I look around and am bombarded by extreme religious messages. I fear not being accepted if I voice my atheism, since people are taught to hate based on differing beliefs. Now I feel I am not alone. I can admit to my atheism with a lessened fear of judgment and intolerance. That to me is the significance of these ads.

  92. starcadia says:

    Ww, th thsts r ltrlly gttng mr nd mr rtrdd vry dy. Is this an English nanny thing? And what are the signs going to say to counteract this closed-minded philosophical violence?

    Mrns. Spend your money on education instead so you can learn what “God” actually means, as opposed to what the average Christian, who doesn’t know either, tells you.

  93. Astin says:

    I still don’t believe in Atheism.

  94. Teller says:

    “Many of you simple can’t read.”

  95. Patrick Dodds says:

    I’m with you Bugs – I’d heard that they had to use “probably” otherwise they’d be breaking the Trades Description Act or some such. I also thought that, quite usefully, it makes a neat, almost subconscious, reference to the Carlsberg ads of yesteryear [prob. a Brit phenomenon - apols the rest of the world - you might find them on YouTube].
    As for God, is there a group I can join who find the chances of his existence vanishingly small and, if he were found to exist, would declare him somewhat lacking in the Common Humanity department (given Gaza, tsunamis, AIDS, herpes, senile dementia et al)? Perhaps this group could sponsor some buses with “God? He’s a bit of a heartless git….”

  96. Teller says:

    Just what I deserved.

  97. dullsteamer says:

    #61, it’s far from a perefect metaphor. Christians don’t just want to warn the people of Hiroshima of the impending bomb, they want to hang around and dictate the terms and conditions that must be adhered to if they want to escape.

    That’s the main reason Christians are reviled by so many. They just can’t help sticking their noses unasked into other peoples lives, and presuming to tell them how they should live. When they stop doing that, I MIGHT be inclined to afford their beliefs some respect. Until then, they can all go and root their boots.

  98. starfish and coffee says:

    The headline of the post says “Massive Success”. By what standard is it a success? It seems to me that Cory Doctorow is implying that the mere presence of 800 ads qualifies as a success.

    Shouldn’t we for example measure success in the amount of debate it generates? Or better yet the number of people refusing to be bullied around by faith leaders as a result of seeing this ad?

  99. Johne Cook says:

    #192 – XOPHER

    I understand you’re noodling around with the ‘probably’ element of the ad, but since you raised the point, is there nothing in your life of which you are absolutely certain?

    I think it is a little over-clever to suggest that all certainty is foolish. I am absolutely certain that the chair in which I sit will bear my weight. Perhaps it will fail in spectacular fashion, re-introducing me to the law of gravity in most ignominious fashion, but the less sexy reality is that my chair has been quietly dependable for many years thus far, and will likely continue to do so for many years to come. Also, I am absolutely certain that I believe in the law of gravity. ;) So there’s the physical.

    If I read your posts in this thread alone, it seems to me that you have a strong stance on a particular social issue. In fact, unless I’m not understanding your perspective, it appears you are absolutely certain about your stance in that regard, which is fine. That’s the social element of my argument.

    The same could be said of ethics. I am absolutely certain that rape is wrong. I am also absolutely certain about other things. That’s not to say that I wouldn’t at least listen to new information, but given what I know now, I rather doubt my stance will ever change.

    It is not so great a leap to also develop or embrace certain spiritual things with a degree of certainty, although I agree up-front that while these truths have been proved to my satisfaction in my own life, such things aren’t something I can prove to others. It is a personal thing. After thinking about it since posting earlier in this thread, this is where I think Penn Jillette’s ‘proselytize’ language is inexact. I think a better word is ‘witness.’ When Jesus spoke with the woman at the well, he didn’t lead with the nature of her sin, but rather met her in her area of need. After that, she was open to hearing more about his own spiritual certainty and made her own decisions from there. That approach makes sense to me. Whether one is Christian or not, that approach seems at least more considerate, not to mention effective, than the approach taken by the religious ads in question.

    Returning to the point of the post, I appreciate the tenor of the atheist ad far more than the tenor of the theist ads, but that speaks more to taste and delivery than certainty. The theist ads seem to be in poor taste and ineffective in delivery. It seems God needs a better ad agency. ;) Perhaps He can get Tom Stein to represent him (geeky Scalzi reference)!

  100. Anonymous says:

    Amazing how much money and time is spent into fighting something that doesn’t exist.

    After all, if death is the end and nothing we do here ultimately matters, why bother convincing anyone of anything? Who cares if someone’s right or wrong?

  101. Willie McBride says:

    @ Technogeek #7: After all, most belief systems really boil down to “Be kind to each other; the rest is commentary.”

    Ehm, no. Most belief systems boil down to “Be kind to those who believe the things you believe. The gentiles/heathens/infidels are fair game.”

  102. JDavid says:

    @IamInnocent- why are they so vocal?

    It’s all about what everything else in this world is:
    “Look at me!”

    The desperate need for negative attention runs throughout all “skeptic”/”debunker”/atheist traits.

    These people often want you to confront them, and desire the drama conflict affords them.

  103. akirabergman says:

    “Probably” means they are not Atheists. Atheists are certain, and that makes them materialists. They don’t understand the uncertainty principle.

  104. tboy says:

    I’d pay money for a “I’m a < < belief system >>, and I don’t give a < < expletive >> about what you < < expletive >> believe.”

  105. Zaron3d says:

    So if the answer is that there “probably is no God”, you should choose to NOT believe? And this is the answer from so-called “intellects”. Hey, I have a box that probably has a million dollars in it and it’s yours for free… want it?

  106. Cpt. Tim says:

    #14. that makes you a fundamentalist.

    “They don’t sound like they’re certain in their non-belief.”

    we’re not. I’m an atheist who thinks based on evidence that there is probably no god. There are fundamentalist devout people that would continue to believe in God despite any evidence. Because faith is their virtue.

    Mine is doubt. I doubt that god exists. I don’t have any good evidence that he does. so i operate under the assumption that he doesn’t like i operate under the assumption that gravity and evolution are facts. but i wouldn’t reject proof that turned the tables on anything.

  107. Anonymous says:

    Seriously…
    I am in a bit of a quandary, I believe that there both is and is not a God – at the same time.
    It’s a challenging way to live in that there is everything in the universe to live up to and to let down, and at the same time nothing to do.

    Since this is irrational, I am left trying to thrive in a world where people fight each other over their ideas about life itself, using their most ‘rational’ arguments which are often martial.

    I like the message of the atheist bus ads… not just because I am fond of free speech, but I think the root of the message is one of the helpful messages that can come from such groups..
    Be Kind.

    However I really wish that people would drop the rhetoric and simply live the life and have respect and awe for all that is… is that too much to want?

    With love, J

  108. davegroff says:

    @15, I don’t think thats correct. Richard Dawkins seems quite definite in his atheism (and yes, arrogant). If there are doubts about no god, then you have agnosticism.

  109. Johne Cook says:

    #153 – XOPHER:

    It’s the current Mormons we think are stupid and want to make fun of and shame. The hope is that they’ll quit their stupid homophobic hate organization (calls itself a church, but so does the Westboro Baptist Church) and that eventually it will be destroyed.

    What do you mean ‘we,’ kemosabe? I don’t think Brandon Sanderson is stupid. I don’t think Orson Scott Card is stupid. (Opinionated, certainly, but that is no crime. At least, not yet.)

  110. Anonymous says:

    @Technogeek

    “The opposite of the religious fanatic is not the fanatical atheist but the gentle cynic who cares not whether there is a god or not.”
    Eric Hoffer

    I’m not necessarily for religion either, but it occurs to me that fighting all they are doing is creating and promoting a new religion, it just happens to promote No God instead of One God.

    The other issue is that Christianity thrives on opposition, they claim that people fighting or persecuting them is evidence that they are doing right. These posters, I guarantee it, will be hot topics in churches for weeks to come–they will be used as rhetorical rallying points for the holier-than-thou.

    –epynephrin

  111. Bender says:

    Just as there are many blowhard fundamentalists and judgmental religious people, there are also many of us who believe but who are the opposite of that. As usual, the noisy hate mongers color everyones opinions about a group.

  112. Takuan says:

    these ads should be paid for by a tax on organized religions.

  113. Cpt. Tim says:

    “Probably” means they are not Atheists.”

    this is not correct.

  114. Anonymous says:

    #4 POSTED BY LB ,
    I believe in god, but I agree with their message. Stop worrying about damnation and salvation and just be a better person, period.

    I fully agree!

    Peoples of this mortal planet earth – Friends, romans, countrymen. catholics, protestants, methodists, mormons, jews, buddhists,muslims, c.o.scientologists, atheists, agnostics, the monkees fans, gays (& others), straights, blacks, whites, yellows, reds, 1/2 castes, left handed, right handed, anyone and every other one I may have overlooked …..

    I think you’ve all delved too far into what the original intention was for this adv campaign.
    It states that it was as a positive counter response to a previous campaign by some god fearing christians trying to put the fear of burning in hell for eternity unless you change your ways …

    The original campaign’s use of the word
    ‘probably’, as stated by other listers, is that they have used the word probably as its wouldn’t be passed by the adv bureaus for fear of being offensive or possible legal reasons etc,
    plus also there’s that slight possibility that there could be (although unlikely) some evidence somewhere that god does exist – perhaps at the end of the rainbow where leprechauns riding on unicorns guard against little blurple humperdinkers while fairies tend the gardens, so its best to leave (one corner of) one base uncovered.

    But I think that due to the overwhelming support that they received – (800 buses now instead of the original 30) the message that’s being relayed now isn’t so much as – What it is being an atheist, or that they’re trying to enlist or convert people to being an atheist but more of a generalised statement that’s been cast across all walks of life regardless of what you may or may not believe. More of a – hey there’s probably no god. Now lets all stop worrying about it & the what ifs etc and lets all start to get along and enjoy life without worrying about possible repercussions when we’re dead.

    As per the K.H quote “..we should be kind to each other and do what we can for other people.”

    .. wouldn’t the money be better spent on communication between all groups?
    How do you spread the money evenly amongst all groups without offending any of those you may have overlooked. I think the message that is being said IS communicating to all groups as its reaching everyone via a public advertising medium.

    And Cpt Tim 87. With your imaginary ganesh and your muffins – as long as he doesn’t decide to become more than he is and start chanting, “I am not an elephant. I am a god – a stud muffin!”
    then neither you, I nor anyone else will have any fears to worry about. (joke)

    These I found in opposition to the recent opposition of prop8. enjoy.

    Tongue in cheek look at Prop 8 in “the Musical”

    http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/c0cf508ff8

    And a very clever twist on the wording against Prop8 (using nothing but their very own words).

    http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/cca5e8a78a

    cheers

  115. Nobita says:

    ah this goes for both of religious and non religious person. It’s one thing to be proud of your belief, but it’s another thing to be a jerk about it. There may be God, there may be no God, why can’t we live with that. peace

  116. Anonymous says:

    @ Zaron3d:
    Sure, I’ll check the box, but I’ll still say I’m not a millionaire until I’ve found the money. Belief isn’t actually a choice about you want to be true, it’s what you find convincing about reality. Probably not = not believing.

  117. GuidoDavid says:

    So, no theoretical physicist can be an atheist and at the same time understand the UP?

    Yeah, right.

  118. BadKittyM says:

    I’m not sure why the lack of a creator or ‘god’ would bother anyone or make them feel alone. The very LAST thing we are, is alone. One honestly doesn’t need to be afraid of the threat of burning in a fiery pit for all eternity, to make them act decent to others.

    I do it as often as possible, because being decent to others whether I know them or not works well within society, and helps create a cohesive, working whole. One must always be alert to the very real possibility that one’s neighbor may not feel the same way, of course, but that is simply common sense. “Doing unto others as you would have them do unto you” is also plain common sense, which even other orders of animals practice. To the best of my knowledge, they don’t worry about religion or lack thereof.

    ‘Probably’ is the only factual way to state it. That’s one of the differences between agnosticism and religion. Religion insists there IS a god, regardless. This is not a fact, it is a belief. Atheists cannot factually state there is NOT and could not be any form of creator, thus the use of the word ‘probably.’ Refreshingly honest.

    Antinous – Bravo.

  119. Xopher says:

    I like this, especially with the “probably.” If they’re a counter to ads threatening damnation they’re justified in saying “relax and enjoy your life.” Love the Hepburn quote too.

    General comment though: please don’t take “believe this or burn in hell” Christians (in charity, I call them this, though I actually think they’re CHINOs) as encompassing all Christians. Please don’t take the Abrahamic religions as encompassing all religions; saying “religion is” when all you’ve encountered is Christianity, Judaism, and Islam is like saying “hamburgers are” when you’ve only had McDonalds, Burger King, and Wendy’s. Also, ‘atheist’ is commonly taken as meaning “non-religious,” but not all religions are theistic; Buddhism comes to mind, for example. Not all religions have specific required beliefs at all; some are systems of practices, and while certain mental states are encouraged at appropriate times, you really can believe what you want.

    These ads are not “anti-religious.” They express an informed opinion contrary to the teachings of SOME (very common) religions.

    Cpt. Tim 20: …faith is their virtue…Mine is doubt. I doubt that god exists. I don’t have any good evidence that he does. so i operate under the assumption that he doesn’t like i operate under the assumption that gravity and evolution are facts. but i wouldn’t reject proof that turned the tables on anything.

    Hear, hear! “Doubt is the cardinal virtue of the rational mind.”

    Anonymous 45: Fourth… wouldn’t the money be better spent on communication between all groups? Dialogue, respect, reconciliation… these are the tools to use against conflict, not spurious, arrogant and irritating bus messages!

    The kind of groups that put up ads saying “Come to Christ or go to hell” aren’t about to have dialogue with atheists. Also, it’s the VICTIMS of that nonsense the atheists are trying to reach.

    CinemaJay 58: I’m tired of seeing ads for God. He doesn’t need it. And ads against him reek of fascism.

    Fascism? Why? I don’t see the connection. Could you elaborate?

    JDavid 63: How about both sides just shut the fuck up, let people believe what they want, and keep it to yourselves.

    Good idea! And let’s just have the Sunnis and Shi’its stop shooting each other, and the Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland, and the Israelis and the Palestinians, and we can just have Al Qaeda and the Taliban “shut the fuck up [and] let people believe what they want” too! There’s just no END to how good an idea that is! I wonder why no one thought of it before?

    Cpt. Tim 87: personally if i find the need to take a dualist approach and talk to “god” i talk to imaginary ganesh. He has a elephants head and seems like he’d be a nice guy. and would like tika masala as much as me.

    Ganesh IS a nice guy. He’s about the friendliest god I know of, both in the human and in the interface sense of ‘friendly’.

    And if you’re talking to “imaginary Ganesh,” you’re talking to Ganesh. Imagine that he’s right there and that you’re talking to him and that he’s listening: that’s pretty much the very definition of prayer. And if you can’t quite make yourself believe he’s really out there, he won’t care. Very few gods really mind doubt, in my experience.

    GuidoDavid 89: Besides, even if there is a god. Which one is the right one? Ganesh? Thor? Isis? Quetzalcoatl? Baal? Jehova? Marduk?

    Well, aside from Jehova and maybe Baal, you could worship all of those without conflict. Btw Jews worship Marduk at Purim, though they call him Marduk-chai (Mordechai), along with Ishtar (Esther). They made up this story about them to cover this fact, but it’s pretty clear who they are.

    Cpt. Tim 92: Ooooh. i didn’t see him going that way because the box was free. If he wanted to make the analogy appropriate he would have to have said “the box costs most of the things you really enjoy in life.”

    That always pisses me off. They act like it’s free, but the cost is very high, and you get paid with pie in the sky. Actually it’s more like “here’s this box that I have great faith has a million dollars in it, and to get it you have to be a complete slave for 70 years, and then you get to open it and see if it’s empty.”

    Antinous 101: I was outside the local Mormon Temple yelling “Tax the Church” because they had already broached the subject by pushing Prop 8.

    I have already been wondering how long it will be before this thread becomes a game of “whack-a-Mormon” as someone said elsewhere.

  120. Cpt. Tim says:

    “Probably” means they are not Atheists. Atheists are certain”

    i was referring to this blanket statement. It is not correct. It may be correct for some atheists. Not all.

  121. Nobita says:

    #67, dude chill :) my point is you can always get it a day/days before, no need to cry over it. i assume you are old enough to get an alcohol, thus able to drive or ride a transit on any other day but Sunday. :P

  122. justONEguy says:

    I like the message, ‘probably’ included.

    Rock the boat! Religious zealots have been at the helm for far too long!

  123. Cpt. Tim says:

    personally if i find the need to take a dualist approach and talk to “god” i talk to imaginary ganesh. He has a elephants head and seems like he’d be a nice guy. and would like tika masala as much as me.

    I like elephants.

  124. Takuan says:

    *sniff?* mormons??

    say, ever noticed how there doesn’t seem to be any real elderly mormons? Their well-scrubbed happy families always have lots of kids and healthy middle aged people with maybe a token gray hair that still looks well below “aged”. Now, you take that observation and consider how mormons all keep large stocks of food in their cellars. Connect the dots people, think. Beef prices are sky-high, pretty well all animal protein has risen.

  125. jetfx says:

    @ #12 “To say that there is no god would be an assertion of a fact without any evidence (which would be pretty hard to come by), i.e. the very definition of faith.”

    Actually no. “God does not exist” is a logically default position. One does not need to offer evidence to prove the non-existence of something. Anyone who posits that “God exists” has the burden of proof to provide convincing evidence for their hypothesis. A non-believer merely has to counter with reasons why the believer’s evidence is insufficient/invalid.

    I am what many here can’t seem to find a word for – a Reply

  • cjamesatl says:

    Re: Post # 3 “Airpillow”

    That’s a clever observation! Atheism doesn’t need advertising. I, too, thought the concept was understood. Unless the Athiests are trying to get recruits. But isn’t that what they rail against anyway – recruitment efforts of the church?

    The whole campaign serves no purpose but to boost the puffed up egos of atheists who disagree with the vast majority of folks who believe there is a God or Creator.

  • GuidoDavid says:

    Soylent Green is made of Mormons?

  • Teller says:

    Wife’s a jack-Mormon like SSWAAN #152. Can drink all you mokes under the table. Early on, Mormon elders came around the house with their slide show. Nutty stuff to me. Indians are the lost tribe of Israel and such. But they were nice people, salt of the earth. Ate my youngest daughter.

  • pyota says:

    @davegroff. agnosticism covers a wide range of doubt. many people think it means that gods existence is equally likely as its non-existence. atheism treats belief in gods like belief in fairies. we can’t prove fairies don’t exist, but few people think that is any reason to believe in them.

    btw you are wrong about richard dawkins; and why do you say he is arrogant?

  • Cpt. Tim says:

    76 said “So if the answer is that there “probably is no God”, you should choose to NOT believe? ”

    Yes, this is the answer from so called intellects. Conclusions based on evidence with room for doubt and more evidence.

    We make operational assumptions to get through life. I believe that people passing me by on the street are not out to kill me. There is a probability that this is wrong, but the alternative is living in fear of everyone i pass.

    As for this box you mentioned. Based on the evidence that most people do not have a box with a million dollars in it, and based on the evidence that most people would not give away a million dollars for free, I would say the chances of your box having a million dollars in it is quite low.

    But as it is free, I will accept your offer.

    I’m sorry, what was that analogy trying to say exactly.

  • dadu says:

    Here we go again.
    No one here is ever happy about converts to Christianity.
    Why? Because my BELIEF in atheism is better than your belief in God.

    All Freethinkers are equal, except my freethinking is better than your freethinking.

  • Gloria says:

    @18: Thank you, Cpt. Tim; that exactly sums up my atheist “belief.” I may not necessarily reject God IF there is proof proven for his existence, but until then, I have no reason to doubt his non-existence.

    If things were that way, I’d be pretty damn busy doubting many things’ non-existence (finally, the unicorn’s time has come again).

    How do you prove God doesn’t exist, anyway?

  • GuidoDavid says:

    Zaron3D: Probably you are full of it.
    Besides, even if there is a god. Which one is the right one? Ganesh? Thor? Isis? Quetzalcoatl? Baal? Jehova? Marduk?
    Even if you believe there is something, just do good and try to not being a dick, as someone said earlier, if there is really a god who has self esteem problems and is going to judge you according to your beliefs (Thoughtcrime, yikes!) indepedently of your acts, then it is better not to spend eternity with a sociopathic, selfish, narcissistic entity.

  • Tenn says:

    Eh. These would probably be a pain in the ass for me, since every time they pass by they would reaffirm Christian persecution complexes, and my parents would pitch a fit about how things like this made me a heathen God-hating paganistic child-killer Buddhist.

    I don’t believe in God, Thor, Shiva, or Bodhisattvas as holy creatures.

    Thoughts of worshipping things never so much as cross my mind. When something intriguing and ‘miraculous’ happens, I never once think, “That is a scientific event that happened without the interference of God.” I think, “That’s damn cool, I wonder how this occurred,” and speculate.

    But it’s nice that they exist I guess. Atheists can feel included and theists can feel persecuted.

  • autobulb says:

    @12 Paul, I think you have it backwards. Believers are the ones saying that there is a God and that others should believe as well. So it is up to them to prove that there is a God. The problem is that belief and nonbelief in a diety of that sort function on two different sets of rationality that aren’t really compatible. The believer can say, I will prove it to you: look at x, y, z. And the non believer sees those items of proof in a different way, perhaps a scientific way that doesn’t require the existence of a deity in order for those items to work/have meaning/have beauty.

    Saying there is no God isn’t a belief, it’s a lack of belief due to lack of evidence.

  • Ernunnos says:

    #17 Indeed.

    #20 I’d love to leave it at that, but I still can’t buy beer for my afternoon BBQ on Sunday morning. It isn’t atheists passing laws to inconvenience (or worse) the religious. As long as they see fit to mess with even my grocery shopping, I reserve the right to be “mean”.

    #15 As for “probably”, well, it’s a case of damned if you do and damned if you don’t. If you express certainty, you’re an “atheist fundamentalist”, if you use less direct language, they pounce on it as weakness. If you’re going to get hit no matter what, there’s no point in holding back. I prefer “God is just pretend.” The burden of proof lies with those who assert the positive. I have no problem actively disbelieving any internally incoherent and un-evidenced proposition. (Which are infinite in number anyway. Having an open mind about all of them is itself an untenable position.)

  • Xopher says:

    GuidoDavid 141: So, no theoretical physicist can be an atheist and at the same time understand the UP?

    No, you just can’t determine their religious position and their understanding of Heisenberg at the same time. Besides, what does the Upper Peninsula have to do with it?

  • Baldhead says:

    Awesome. Always disliked the negative incentive that was practised by Christians. It’s not, “Our religion is great.” It’s “Believe in Christ or suffer eternal torment.”

    No Athiest ever threatened anybody with eternal torment.

  • ill lich says:

    That’s great, God bless those atheists!

  • ibexy says:

    Humans and religion. Its more about territorialism and ego than beliefs these days. The gods must be laughing themselves silly.

  • GregLondon says:

    nice quote by Hepburn.

  • Anonymous says:

    I don’t believe in adds.

  • Cpt. Tim says:

    Haha. Yes! Michigan humour. The feelings forever.

  • TheOceaneer says:

    #76, what you are referring to is “Pascal’s Wager”. If you look it up on Wikipedia, you can see a summary of current thought on it (including popular counter-arguments).

  • GuidoDavid says:

    Starcadia:
    “counteract this closed-minded philosophical violence?”

    You are talking about your post, right?

    And we are vocal because we are tired of people saying that we should feel this or that other way because we lack god in our cold hearts or something like that. We are tired of people blaming on us the evils of the world. Finally, it is a good thing to be exposed to other points of view, we are not forcing to anyone to believe or not believe, as many religious people still do, starting with the children. Why is it wrong that people can see the other side of religious issues?

  • Stickarm says:

    @ DAVEGROFF #19 “Richard Dawkins seems quite definite in his atheism (and yes, arrogant).”

    But you can’t find writing or argument from Richard Dawkins in which he says something definite about the existence of god, can you? He never says “There is no god.” His position is always exactly as people here have explained (lots of good commentary so far, actually) — no one can *disprove* the existence of god, but there is a lot of evidence the points towards god’s nonexistence and, most damningly, no one can *prove* god’s existence either. A rational weighing of this situation gives the result that there probably is no god. Reason gives huge weight to this result, in fact, and it is often taken as functionally indistinguishable from certainty, despite the fact that the question is likely to ever be put to rest in any absolute sense.

    Uncertainty is okay when you aren’t making your evaluations based on faith.

    With regard to arrogance, Richard Dawkins has actually responded quite well to this criticism:

    “I am sometimes accused of arrogant intolerance in my treatment of creationists. Of course arrogance is an unpleasant characteristic, and I should hate to be thought arrogant in a general way. But there are limits! To get some idea of what it is like being a professional student of evolution, asked to have a serious debate with creationists, the following comparison is a fair one. Imagine yourself a classical scholar who has spent a lifetime studying Roman history in all its rich detail. Now somebody comes along, with a degree in marine engineering or mediaeval musicology, and tries to argue that the Romans never existed. Wouldn’t you find it hard to suppress your impatience? And mightn’t it look a bit like arrogance?”

    Found here.

    And I think the bus ads are awesome — a heartwarming success!

  • Takuan says:

    we shall form the Anti-Mormon Cannibalism League (AMCL). Or perhaps The Society for the Prevention of Mormon Cannibalism and Excessive Polygamous Breeding? SPMCEPB?

  • Cpt. Tim says:

    #83 Ooooh. i didn’t see him going that way because the box was free. If he wanted to make the analogy appropriate he would have to have said “the box costs most of the things you really enjoy in life.”

  • Anonymous says:

    I honestly see this as a waste of money. This money could have gone to helping people who need it. There’s probably no God? Why is this important enough to stick on a bus which all sorts of people use. I don’t advocate putting religious or nonreligious messages on public transit.

  • randalll says:

    The “probably” is there to keep atheists from looking like jerks. A welcome respite to the “you will burn in hell for eternity” ads that are everywhere in the US.

  • Gary61 says:

    Well, I looked in my closet, and God wasn’t there. Therefore, there is no God.
    (I’m a medium-weight atheist.)

    “This bus runs on SCIENCE, not FAITH.”

  • Johne Cook says:

    XOPHER, #201:

    * re: Bush, take two.
    I revealed one candid (and may I add ‘nuanced’) data point to demonstrate that I’m not a party line guy. I wasn’t angling for your approval nor volunteering for your enmity.

    My point is that like any good colorful character, I’m not easily pidgeon-holed, and I resist being lumped together with anybody, be it yankees, cheeseheads, or the Religious Right. (Speaking of which, as a fellow Christian, instead of joining the Religious Right, I challenge them to return to the more social gospel Jesus himself demonstrated and advocated. As I already get flak from them for not toeing their party line, I’m not volunteering for more flak from you for being too much like them, y’know?)

    I tend Conservative, but as the Right has strayed so far to the fringe, my position feels more and more centrist to me by this point. Teresa referred to me as an ‘orphaned intelligent trad,’ which I take to be ‘not a Neocon.’ So it’s also tough to pidgeon-hole me based on my specific politics. I vote my conscience, which is mine and not something mandated to me from some televangelist. Furthermore, not to put too fine a point on it, my conscience is not mandated by you, either. No offense.

    * re: abortion-litmus-test
    Ok, you’re wrong. (Well, you said to tell you if you were wrong about me in that regard.) ;)

    These are some of the things you pass by as “the rest.” I think you need to think about “the rest,” and weigh it against the things you got, to make a sound ethical judgement.

    What makes you think I haven’t?

    * re: my 2004 vote
    See above.

    * re: all the things you believe in.
    I believe in many or most of what you wrote, and come from an apparently quite diversely different background. How about that?

    Let me ask you this: why on Earth should YOUR personal beliefs be privileged over mine, or over long-standing principles of law? In particular, why do you think the state should enforce YOUR definition of marriage (assuming you do think so)?

    Who, me? Where have you gotten that I think my beliefs should be privileged over yours? Where have I written about marriage at all? My musings here have been largely on-topic, or at least on-tangent. ;)

    In this thread, I’ve been talking about the atheist ad campaign on buses in London, and ruminating a bit about how the Christian ad campaigns that I read about were slipshod at best and offensive at work (and I am one, as they say).

    One last rhetorical point. I have strong friendships with gay men who are neither Christian nor Conservative, and they would, I believe, vouch for my character. How many strong friendships with Conservative Christians do you have? I’m on various lists with staunch Liberals, and they would also vouch for my character even though I tend Conservative. Are you able to say that as well?

    Not knowing you, I hold no malice toward you, and certainly wouldn’t leap toward the ‘enemy’ moniker on a scant exchange on a public forum. Perhaps you should get to understand me before you commit to some kind of enmity with a total stranger based on the broadest stereotypes.

    For my part, your stories of anguish and loss resonate with me, and I find I only wish you healing and peace, not enmity. Of that, I am absolutely certain. ;)

  • Patrick Dodds says:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F_M7zOew2Pc

    Aforementioned Carlsberg ad – a good example.

  • AirPillo says:

    Hmm, okay… I see the logic behind this idea, now.

    It’s certainly a cognitive dissonance, but I get it. It is, at least, less confusing than a centralized organization for anarchists.

    … now that is a confusing concept.

  • Nobita says:

    @#28 : nah you can always buy it on Saturday. blaming religion for that kind of thing is over rated. i mean it’s like blaming Christmas because you can’t do grocery on Christmas morning. I guess you’ll never be happy because there is always something to interfere with your grocery shopping, like uhmm any other public holiday perhaps. oh well

  • dargaud says:

    Maybe it should have been: “There definitely is no proof of god(s).”

  • Ghede says:

    @26

    Simple really. You live a full and pious life, then get hit by a bus and simply stop existing instead of ascending to the big cloudy paradise to see granny again.

    That test can be altered slightly to meet any religions requirements too. Except those with no afterlife, the grim bastards.

  • Anonymous says:

    The reasoning behind including “Probably”:

    “There’s been an exciting level of debate about the campaign. Lots of you have asked why the word “probably” is included in the ad slogan, and stated that you’d prefer the wording to read “There’s no God”. While I fully understand this view, there’s a vital reason for the “probably”‘s inclusion: as with the Carlsberg ads, it’s likely to get us around the advertising regulations (specifically points 3.1, 3.2, 5.1, 8.1, 9.1 and 11.1 in the general rules of the CAP Code, which regulates non-broadcast adverts in the UK). In my view, neither version of the slogan breaches the code, but CAP has advised that “the inclusion of the word ‘probably’ makes it less likely to cause offence, and therefore be in breach of the Advertising Code.”

    There’s another reason I’m keen on the “probably”: it means the slogan is more accurate, as even though there’s no scientific evidence at all for God’s existence, it’s also impossible to prove that God doesn’t exist (or that anything doesn’t). As Richard Dawkins states in The God Delusion, saying “there’s no God” is taking a “faith” position. He writes: “Atheists do not have faith; and reason alone could not propel one to total conviction that anything definitely does not exist”. His choice of words in the book is “almost certainly”; but while this is closer to what most atheists believe, “probably” is shorter and catchier, which is helpful for advertising. I also think the word is more lighthearted, and somehow makes the message more positive.”

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2008/oct/23/atheist-bus-campaign-ariane-sherine

  • zuzu says:

    theological noncognitivism:

    Theological noncognitivism is the argument that religious language, and specifically words like “God” (capitalized), are not cognitively meaningful. Some thinkers propose it as a way to prove the nonexistence of anything named “God”.

  • Raj77 says:

    @23, CJamesATL: “The whole campaign serves no purpose but to boost the puffed up egos of atheists who disagree with the vast majority of folks who believe there is a God or Creator”

    There is no such vast majority in the UK. Shld thsts b frcd t cncr wth yr mjrty? Prhps n cmps f sm srt?

  • Teller says:

    Favorite comment in the link thread: There is probably no bus.

  • duncan says:

    Come on… There is/are no god(s).

    I do not believe in god(s), however, i do not want to be branded an atheist either, i prefer having no title. I feel that having a title such as atheist, makes me feel that i am part of a group that preaches that there is no god. This feels too similar to any other religion which preaches that there is/are god(s).

    Ok, back to the buses…

    If religions can have their slogans on buses, so can atheists, the only problem is which slogan will people believe in.

    The atheists’ slogans on the buses will probably not affect too many people who are religious, just like the religions’ slogans will probably not affect too many people who do not believe in religions.

    The slogans’ greatest effect would be on people who are undecided. I think that the fear of hell(religion) or the fear of nothingness(atheist) after death is a huge factor in a person’s choice of beliefs.

  • Anonymous says:

    First… when you say “probably” it means you aren’t sure, so these are weak agnostics, not atheists.

    Second… don’t we have enough bible thumpers and religious extremists attempting to push their views onto the rest of the world? Why do we need atheists/agnostics doing the same??

    Third… there seems to be no reasoning in the message… it is just like those that say to believe in God just in case there is one! How irrelevant and faithless!

    Fourth… wouldn’t the money be better spent on communication between all groups? Dialogue, respect, reconciliation… these are the tools to use against conflict, not spurious, arrogant and irritating bus messages!

  • sswaan says:

    Xopher: For the record, I’m not an Ex- or Recovering- anything…raised an atheist, not baptized. BUT being part of prominent Mormon extended families on both sides, I know enough to know. And all teasing about the poor Donner party aside (no, not that family, Takuan), yeah, sure, it sounds pretty nutty to me. But from my perspective, it’s no nuttier and no more invented than any other religion. It’s just newer than most.

    And again, we’re all pretty pissed about Prop 8…but I’ve been pissed at the LDS church since they funded the anti-same-sex-marriage effort in Hawaii 10 years ago. BUT not all active, practicing Mormons feel that way: http://mormonsformarriage.com/
    AND if you’re trying to get someone to agree with you, may I suggest that you try opening with something other than “Your belief system is stupid”?

    I think that these bus posters take a better approach…basically: Here’s what I believe, let’s all just chill and be good to each other.

    I know that’s not going to solve problems like homophobia and discrimination, but it’s not meant to.

  • hatchclown says:

    Great message.

    Needed message.

    Religion is absurd and unreasonable.

    Atheism isn’t a religion.

    You have no idea whether there is or isn’t a god and whether or not the god you chose to believe in is the right god.

    Religion is a gamble and a house of cards.

    “to each his own” in regards to religion is dangerous

    Religious thought needs to be challenged.

    I realize those are bold statements to make and without giving my reasoning you are free to assume that I have none or that the reasoning is flawed or incomplete. I’m confident that if you research the subjects of atheism and religion you’ll come to similar conclusions. I have a B.A. in Christian Theology and have researched and wrestled with the idea or religion and belief in god for years. I feel very confident in my current stance as an atheist. Meaning, I don’t have belief in anything supernatural. I don’t state with 100% positivity that there isn’t a god or that there aren’t unicorns. I believe reasoning trumps faith. Why would you want to spend your life living up to rules that are based on a gamble? What if you bet your life on the wrong thing?

  • Antinous says:

    If I know your religious or non-religious preference without having asked you first, then you are a bore. Announcing that you’re an atheist or announcing that you’re a Jehovah’s Witness are both about as conversationally brilliant as telling me about your spastic colon.

  • hatchclown says:

    Theological Noncognitivism is atheism

  • zuzu says:

    Richard Dawkins and Deepak Chopra apparently fought it out in the April 2002 TED conference. A real-life “celebrity deathmatch“.

  • starcadia says:

    Guido – I’m not impressed by your 2nd grade, “I know you are but what am I” approach.

    You’re arguing that people shouldn’t tell you how to feel. Well, this sign does exactly that, just in the exact opposite direction. Two wrongs don’t make a right. It’s stupid. It’s a battle of will, not an intelligent debate. And this, like a lot of atheist propaganda, is highly passive-aggressive and cowardly, not to mention ill-informed.

    So what about those of us who believe in a God that has nothing to do with religion? You know, secular types who require a word for the unknowable due to the contraints of human comprehension? Those of us who don’t make the stupid mistake of confusing the word with some act of creation? What are we supposed to do while the unthinking hordes battle it out?

    In a way I hope the battle becomes so ridiculous that it becomes violent that it thins the gene pools on both sides, in which case the intelligent ones can finally achieve the big progress.

  • michellegreer says:

    @baldhead, I don’t believe that at all. I’m a Christian. If you are a good person, I’d be totally bummed if you suffered eternal torment, regardless of what you believe.

    @Willie McBride Actually, the Bible says to love your enemy quite specifically. I’m not sure what you are basing this on. Please read Matthew 5:44.

    I am a Christian who judges people based on their adherence to the principles of Jesus Christ rather than their profession of dedication to him. There are a lot of Christians like me. They are just too busy doing things rather than evangelizing them.

    Whoever put up this ad has the right just like a church would. I also have a right to say that my belief in God fuels me to provide value to mankind, so it is of utmost importance to me. As long as agnostics and atheists respect that, we’re golden.

  • teh_chris says:

    we need an athiest campaign in cincinnati. every flat surface is covered with jesus. 10 commandments signs on the sides of the highway. and let’s not forget the creationist museum.

  • sirkowski says:

    Oh, nitpickers!

    Maybe it should have said “no god, gods or goddesses”, AMIRITE?

    That ad is great as it is!

  • ROSSINDETROIT says:

    I totally agree with those people and support what they’re doing. I don’t, however, call myself an Atheist. This is a name created by Theists to define me and I decline to be defined on their terms. I’ll never need to deny the existence of a god because the more important arguments against Theism trump that.
    Such an advertising program would be impossible in much if not all of the USA. Just imagine the forces that would be marshaled to immediately crush any large scale attempt, no matter how polite, to suggest that there’s no god.

  • Xopher says:

    Takuan 155: I didn’t know Joseph Smith was in the Donner Party. Live and learn.

    Johne 158: I don’t know from Brandon Sanderson. Orson Scott Card isn’t so much stupid as evil and two-faced. He’s actively homophobic, and it shows in his writing. Don’t get me started on Orson Scott Card. He’s been on my shit list for decades, long before I started dissing Mormons generally.

    Keep in mind that I don’t actually believe all Mormons are stupid. I think they’re various, like everyone, but they believe even stupider things than most religions teach. Saying “you’re stupid to believe that” is rude, but not as rude as spending $20 million to keep me from getting married in California by telling lies about me (or “my kind”) on television. Any nonviolent and legal thing that hurts the CJCLDS is good in my book.

    Saying “Mormon == Stupid” is a strategy. It may be effective, or it may be ineffective, but it’s morally justified.

    I don’t usually try to get people to abandon their home church, but I will do that for Mormons. Someone has to work against those mobs of poor exploited pimply-faced “elders” they send out to starve far from home.

    ____ 162: Hear, hear.

  • IamInnocent says:

    I was wondering: is there here anybody who just don’t recognize themselves into any of what the religions and non-religions have to say?

    That is my case. I have faith, don’t ask me how, it just happened. I am sure that there is a mystery at work, in this world, which is beyond our senses and reasoning and religions. IOW I never saw or felt anything, I don’t know of any philosophy, sect or religion that would accounts in any satisfying way for what I am sure exist.

  • Anonymous says:

    To Dullsteamer, if you knew of a glorious paradise where you and your friends could go if you followed certain rules wouldn’t you want to let your friends know?? True christians should be concerned about spreading the ‘good news’ to anyone they come in contact with no matter who they are. True christians should love all people, no exceptions. That doesn’t mean that they have to like everything that a person does or represents or agree with them on every decision. True christians DO NOT judge and should NOT BE radical in their teaching or in their disagreements with others. I agree that their are definitely people in the world who stick their nose in others peoples business when they shouldn’t. I believe most people know how they should live, right from wrong but there are also some people, maybe because of their upbringing or the ways of the world begin to see things as being acceptable or right when they are clearly not good for them or their family. In some cases a talk may help that person to get back on track and realize what they are doing is heading for disaster but if has to be a loving talk and a lot of listening and acceptance. I hope you find that the people that you say are sticking their nose in unasked are people who truly love you and only want the best for you.

  • lukus says:

    I probably haven’t won the lottery – I’ll still keep hoping. I imagine there are a lot of people who feel the same way about God.

    I think that this does serve a purpose, because the evangelical campaigns designed to scare people into believing are damaging and full of negativity. As far as I’m concerned, the idea that non believers will go to hell comes across as a threat, and the proponents come across as bullies.

    This positive campaign evens up the scales a little.

  • Cpt. Tim says:

    #93 Antinous, how blatant do i have to be about it to irk you?

    if you see me at an anti prop 8 rally with a sign protesting the legislation of religion due to how its affecting many of my friends… how boring is that?

    • Antinous says:

      Tim,

      In that case, the question has been asked. I was outside the local Mormon Temple yelling “Tax the Church” because they had already broached the subject by pushing Prop 8.

  • Xopher says:

    Uh…on second thought, I don’t think saying something I don’t believe is morally justified. I’ll switch to “Mormonism == Stupid,” which I actually do believe. Solider still, “It’s really stupid to believe the Book of Mormon is the Word of God,” but that’s not as buttonable.

  • slapphappe says:

    God is simply the imaginary friend that most adults don’t grow out of. When you’re unable to fabricate your own rules for playing the game of life then imposing the rules of those who played it before you seems reasonable. Better to have some adult supervision than none. Many people seem to need it. Let them be. Unless they break the only true universal rule: Play nicely. Be happy. This is the gospel according to slapphappe if you need to latch onto a belief system instead of the logic of life!

  • Johne Cook says:

    XOPHER, #195: Ah. I was stumbling over the terminology. In my mind, I sense a clear difference in the flavors of the words ‘doubt’ and ‘question.’

    To me, doubt sounds like uncertainty, distrust, shying away from curiosity. To question, however, seems like a neutral term, a matter for investigation, a lively interest in how things work. When I read the term ‘absolute certainty,’ I was taking that to be a measure of confidence, an acknowledgment of demonstrated reliability. As a pragmatist, I’m willing to concede that certain things are consistent. I am therefore free to question things which aren’t as obviously consistent and try to discover for myself why that is or isn’t.

    As a pragmatist, after examination and observation, I’m willing to acknowledge things that are consistently apparent; gravity pulls, chairs support, causes have effect, farmers reap what they sow, as do people. Part of the scientific method involves building on, challenging, and integrating previous knowledge as appropriate.

    If you’re saying that you are intellectually honest, don’t take the wisdom of another at face value, do your own thinking, and draw your own conclusions based on observable cause-and-effect, ok, I get that. I wouldn’t call that ‘doubt,’ however. I’d call that ‘lively curiosity,’ and intellectual responsibility.

    That describes me, as well.

    If the charge is that confidence of Christianity is a blindered product of an unexamined life, I’ll just say that’s not the case for me. I can’t speak for the rest of Christendom, but I’ve been curious for most of my 45 years, and just stubborn enough and ADD enough not to take blithe statements at face value. I’ll listen to what I’m told, but when I have time to myself, I find things out for myself.

    As for the Bush presidency… Well. I knew exactly what I was doing when I voted for him, twice, and each time agonized over the decision. The last vote was especially wrenching, and came down to whom I thought would appoint Supreme Court justices who mostly closely reflected my own personal values. I was content with his performance on that account. I was horrified at many other aspects of his tenure and have been resolute in not defending the litany of things he did that I did not agree with, but doesn’t mean I was some kind of blindered anti-intellectual automaton. I knew whereof I voted, and I got what I most wanted. The rest is the rest.

    Scripture does not teach blind obedience, but rather intelligent curiosity. God seems confident that the more one digs into the way things are put together, his assertions will be shown to be correct, and good, and the reasonable and beneficial way to go about things. Scripture says to test or challenge all things and hold fast to what is true. That sounds very much to me like your description of looking at all the data and comparing it to what you think you know.

    I don’t think it is necessary for you to have friends who oppose same-sex marriage. However, it might be easier to keep some perspective if you at least have some who question it. Much of the vitriol I’ve seen from all sides has come from those who are so sure of their position that they denigrate people who don’t share their same perspective. I think debate is healthy. I think dehumanizing the opposition is barbaric, and I’ve seen it from all sides. Frankly, it far more detestable to me when I see it coming from Christians, and I oppose that wherever I see it.

    Doubting one’s own existence may be an interesting exercise, but the pragmatist in me scoffs at the absurdity of it. If you’re intelligent enough to question your own existence, you’re intelligent enough to accept that you exist enough to form sophisticated philosophical questions when you could be out mowing the lawn, and perhaps the exercise is less about proving a lively curiosity that reinforces your intellectual honesty, and more about avoiding your responsibility to perform mundane chores. ;)

    • Antinous says:

      I think debate is healthy.

      Does that include healthy debates on the relative merits and demerits of slavery, child prostitution and murder for sport? Or just gay marriage?

  • Ian70 says:

    I highly approve of these adverts. There has to be a change from the “You either believe what we want you to or we say you’re going to burn forever” kind of mentality.

    Religious teachings tell people to love their neighbour, but they don’t. Instead they threaten them and make them outcasts, over the slightest differences of opinion. It shakes me to the core of my being; “Christians” acting in a most unChristian way.

  • Violet says:

    I believe in God

    He changed my life.

  • Xopher says:

    OK, just looked up Brandon Sanderson. He doesn’t write the sort of thing I’d ordinarily read, but I HAVE heard of his books (the Wheel of Time series in particular). I’ve read some popular fantasy that convinced me the author was a total moron, and some (less) that convinced me the author was brilliant.

    I haven’t read Sanderson’s work. I’m unlikely to, because it’s not my sort of thing. I don’t read Card because he’s a homophobic jerk. I don’t have any evidence that Sanderson is the same sort of jackhole, but the fact that he’s a Mormon is not evidence for (or, to be fair, against) a capacity for critical thinking.

  • pAULbOWEN says:

    @ #19: in The God Delusion Dawkins proposes a seven-stage scale from 1 (absolutely firm belief in the existence of God) to 7 (the opposite of 1). He describes himself as inhabiting stage 6,
    “Very low probability [of the existence of God] but short of zero. De facto atheist, ‘I cannot know for certain but I think God is very improbable, and I live my life on the assumption that he is not there’.”

    He adds to this in the text “I am agnostic only to the extent that I am agnostic about fairies at the bottom of the garden”.

    In other words, he doesn’t believe in God but, like any proper scientist, he is most uncomfortable occupying a position which does not accept the existence of error bars. This is the opposite of arrogance, it is the built-in acceptance that one may be wrong that underpins all science. His supposed arrogance is in fact anger with the actual arrogance, and intellectual laziness, of too many of the faithful.

    It just occurred to me that the bus message is pretty much a rewording of Dawkins’s stage 6 position, hence perhaps that ‘probably’ that others have had a problem with.

  • Cpt. Tim says:

    #114 “Wow, the atheists are literally getting more and more retarded every day… Morons. Spend your money on education instead so you can learn what “God” actually means, as opposed to what the average Christian, who doesn’t know either, tells you.”

    this attitude you have, this is a christian attitude? Or since you have a low a opinion of average christians, is this the attitude we can expect from the cream of the crop?

  • the_steve says:

    @ #12 “To say that there is no god would be an assertion of a fact without any evidence (which would be pretty hard to come by), i.e. the very definition of faith.”

    @ #22 “Actually no. “God does not exist” is a logically default position. One does not need to offer evidence to prove the non-existence of something.”

    Bingo. If I said that Little Blurple Humperdinkers exist and they eat naughty children for lack of a better pasttime, the burden of proof would be on ME (the believer) to prove to YOU (the nonbeliever), not the other way around.

    God doesn’t exist. If you want to say “probably” that’s your prerogative, but stop fooling yourself into the “just in case!” rationale.

    @ #42 “Whoever put up this ad has the right just like a church would. I also have a right to say that my belief in God fuels me to provide value to mankind, so it is of utmost importance to me.”

    Let’s not turn this into who has the right to say what to whom, because that’s another slippery slope in and of itself. Remember, your rights end where mine begin, or some such nonsense.

  • Cpt. Tim says:

    for shits and giggles, here is the sign i use at pro-gay marriage demonstrations in San Francisco:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/captaintim/3010238209/

    feel free to steal this and use it elsewhere.

  • Xopher says:

    Johne 206: I believe in many or most of what you wrote, and come from an apparently quite diversely different background. How about that?

    I’m not saying you don’t believe those things. I’m saying you voted against them when you voted for Bush in 2004. And if you still think you were right to vote for Bush in 2004, that makes you the enemy of those things (now that it’s 100% clear that Bush opposed them all).

    Where have you gotten that I think my beliefs should be privileged over yours?

    From this bit:

    The last vote was especially wrenching, and came down to whom I thought would appoint Supreme Court justices who mostly closely reflected my own personal values. I was content with his performance on that account.

    (emphasis added) I don’t think Supreme Court Justices should reflect your personal values, or mine: they should uphold the law and the Constitution of the United States, and their only duty beyond that should be to the sacred cause of Justice. I don’t think they should act even to reflect their own personal values. I suspect, however, that we’re getting tangled up in definitions again, since you aren’t an abortion-litmus-test voter; but I’m not sure what you did mean by that. Which is OK; uncertainty is a state I find delicious, like the moment before you open a beautifully-wrapped package and find out what’s inside.

    As for the marriage bit, I was partly speculating (hence the “assuming you do think so”) and partly doing the “a vote for Bush is a vote to deny human rights to gays” thing, because I think it was. I have a lot of trouble wrapping my mind around the concept that I would be friends with people who are fundamentally willing to deny my humanity, which is what I think opposition to same-sex marriage amounts to.

    Not knowing you, I hold no malice toward you, and certainly wouldn’t leap toward the ‘enemy’ moniker on a scant exchange on a public forum. Perhaps you should get to understand me before you commit to some kind of enmity with a total stranger based on the broadest stereotypes.

    Oh, dear. That’s not what I meant by proclaiming that you were my enemy. It doesn’t mean “I’ve decided to hate you” (I definitely haven’t, in fact I’m really starting to like you). It means you’re one of the people whose actions in the world oppose mine. I’m now much less sure of that, though I still don’t know if you regret voting for Bush in 2004, now that you know how much death and suffering his election caused. Don’t Christians do the “love your enemies” thing? Its Pagan counterpart is “defeat your enemies if necessary; but better to make them into allies.” I call you (supposing I was right about your values, which it seems I was not) my enemy as a method of imploring you to stop being my enemy. In 2004 you acted as my enemy. I don’t think you meant to (as such), but you did. That’s what I was pointing out.

    For my part, your stories of anguish and loss resonate with me, and I find I only wish you healing and peace, not enmity.

    OK, that’s it. I definitely like you! :-) You really do seem like a kind, warm person. That seems at odds with your politics to me. I look forward to many more discussions of particular cases with you!

    Peace, shalom, salaam, shaanti.

  • Xopher says:

    Citizens Opposed to Latter-Day Saints’ Consumption of Other People (COLDSCOP). And Citizens Opposed to Latter-Day Saints’ Excessive Breeding (COLDSEB).

    Uniting the two is harder. Mormons Eat People and Breed Excessively – Stop Them (MEPBEST)?

  • Anonymous says:

    Open letter to “The Freethought Association of Canada” and all humanity:

    Let me state firstly who I am: I was raised Roman Catholic, always doubted God’s existence, would call myself an agnostic, but I would like to believe there is MORE than this earthly life.

    Apparently the “The Freethought Association of Canada” feels the need to advertise it’s philosophy on GOD
    namely the denial of God’s existence. One of the ads being placed on public transit states(parphrased here) “There probably is no God, so enjoy life and stop worrying”

    I have a few questions for ALL of the atheists and agnostics in this world.
    For the sake of discussion, let’s say there is no GOD, does that change the way we should live our lives?

    Does that mean it is OK to disregard the Golden Rule?
    Does that mean it is OK to steal from or cheat others?
    Does that mean adultery is OK?
    Does that mean murder is OK?
    Does that mean it it’s OK to mistreat others, men OR women? OR even animals?
    Does that mean it’s OK to abuse your elderly parents?

    I guess what I’m REALLY asking is
    HOW should you live your life differently if you truly believe there is no God?
    Does that mean that CONSCIENCE is a useless trait that developed from some misguided religious teaching?
    Does that mean Sociopaths are OK people?

    One LAST question for all of us to consider :
    What if there IS a GOD and an ETERNITY ………………

    Pierre Chenier
    Westbank, BC

  • Orchestra Spy says:

    God is my random music player.
    I use Winamp. How about you?
    You can say it’s programmed nonsense.
    It’s the cortex rhythm.
    It’s the spiritual three line rise, or three line wounded body.
    Looking up, looking down, it’s quantum chemistry.
    Christ was a psychic. God gave him magic patterns.
    And Buddha, and Mohammed, all those dudes dude. Probably some chicks were rocking it too.
    Maybe in the future more patterns will arise.
    I tend to wonder with so much energy flying around.
    Religion is another word for ground zero!
    Put them apples in the basket baby.

  • imipak says:

    Hatchclown #46: “Religion is a gamble”

    - Pascal thought so… the bloody idiot.

    CinemaJay, #58: First, Godwin. Second, “Let people believe what they want” — no-one’s preventing you from believing in fairies if you want to. We’re just trying to help out those unfortunates who’ve been brainwashed into thinking they’re ill, dangerous or bad if they don’t believe in them as well.

    Barjoe, #64: “Us Christians had better get our act together.” – good luck with that :)

    Tom Hale, #69: You’re thinking of the Simulation Argument aka “the brain-in-a-vat” hypothesis. I do like living in the post-modern era.

    Zaron3d, #83: “Hey, I have a box that probably has a million dollars in it and it’s yours for free… want it?”

    But there are hundreds of people holding boxes, and you only get to pick one. And you don’t find out if you’re right or not until you die. And almost all the box-holders claim you’ll suffer if you pick wrongly, and that all the other box-holders are deluded. And anyway, what do you get out of giving me a million dollars, anyway? And so on.

    #96, and others declining to accept the term “athiest” – might I suggest “bright“?

    Follow the gourd!

  • GuidoDavid says:

    Starcadia:

    What I am talking is about some religious people saying how empty my life is or something like that.

    Something like this:
    “Thanksgiving must be a terrible time for atheists. They have no God to thank.

    They do not have the privilege of gathering with family and friends to express gratitude by saying: “Praise God from whom all blessings flow.” An atheist on his deathbed faces serious uncertainties. Gazing upward, he pleads: “Oh God, if there is a God, please save my soul — if I have one.”

    You are free to do whatever you want and desire ill for people, you are free to spread your hate and bigotry, you are free to tell us to shut up, Starcadia. If expressing our point of view about the world makes you that angry is your problem, not ours.

  • Keneke says:

    I worry about there NOT being a God, that we are all alone. If I were to believe these ads, it would be a source of worry for me. So much for telling me not to worry.

  • Johne Cook says:

    If doubt (or simple lively query) is the cardinal virtue of the rational mind, and the hallmark of the examined life is at least looking at data that contradicts one’s position, then, yes, healthy debate includes any topic you care to mention.

    I’m not intimidated by an alternate perspective, and frequently learn something of interest. And even on the rare occasions that I don’t, there is still value in confirming anew what I already thought I thought.

  • Tom Hale says:

    I believe that when we die, we will continue to exist in some form – I don’t think this necessarily means there is a god or anything based on a religion.

  • lsmith77 says:

    I believe in God. However, I also believe that he doesn’t want us “down here” to spend our lives trying to “study” him or “please” him. I do believe that he wants us to pour ourselves into this life that we’re living and do the best we can for each other and to each other. For those of you who do not believe in “God” do you believe in Karma?? I do. Then what is Karma to you if not some sort of otherworldly existence? “Who” makes things go around and come around? If you don’t believe in Karma or God do you believe in a spirit world of any kind? I’m so curious now I’ll have to read up on atheism and what they do believe. I know they believe in raising money to put ads on buses. Hmmm…that money would have fed a lot of hungry children. But at least you’re telling the world what you “believe”.

  • cinemajay says:

    Advertising for any religion–or against it–is overbearing, divisive, and a waste of tiem.

    Let people believe what they want. The beauty of freedom of religion is that it also grants you the freedom not to believe.

    I’m tired of seeing ads for God. He doesn’t need it. And ads against him reek of fascism.

    How about no ads?

  • GuidoDavid says:

    And, yet seeing everyhting tha mankind is able to do, I have never wished mass murder or genocide, Starcadia. If that is what religionless god has to offer, I’ll pass and take the moral uncertainty guided by guts and the Human Rights declaration that now are my beliefs. Thanks, but no thanks.

  • Xopher says:

    Johne 193: Actually I try to doubt and question everything. Remember that I consider doubt the cardinal virtue of the rational mind. My reason is this: the more certain of your rightness you are, the less inclined you are to look at data that contradicts your position. By contrast, the more you doubt, the more you’re inclined to look at all the data and continually revise your theory (or political position, or whatever) to fit the facts. For that reason people in the habit of doubting their own correctness are more likely to be right, because they’ve checked. This is why the true scientist never says anything is absolutely certain, and why bonehead creationists seize on that (“it’s only a theory!”), their apparent assumption being that they must be right because they’re so sure.

    Actually that kind of bone-deep certainty is the product of an unexamined life, of a lifelong habit of accepting statements by authority figures as unquestionably true. It is toxic to a free society, because the more people who have such habits the easier it is for a charming and authoritative tyrant to take over. Unfortunately this is how most people live, and that fact resulted in, among other things, the disastrous Bush presidency.

    It is, I admit, dangerous for me not to have any friends who oppose same-sex marriage. It makes it easier to ignore any arguments against it. However, I have a certain amount of integrity (I believe more than the average person), and I continually challenge anyone who opposes it to give me a reason other than received wisdom (which is by definition not backed up by logic) for opposing it. Someday someone may do so, and if I think it outweighs the powerful reasons I have for supporting it I may change my stance. I consider this vanishingly unlikely, but for me there is always doubt, because without doubt there can be no such thing as an open mind, and to me an open mind is the only kind worthy of the name.

    Fortunately, I have yet to hear an argument against same-sex marriage that didn’t, upon examination, boil down to “everything should be my way,” “ew, homos are icky,” “if we let the n—–s into our neighborhood the property values will go down,” or something equally unbecoming of persons of decency and integrity. I don’t expect I ever will. If I do it will be fascinating.

    While I’m not, in normal headspace, absolutely certain of anything (even my own existence, which I doubt periodically just to stay in practice—and I reject Descartes’ argument, btw), on most matters I’ve come to a high-degree-of-certainty theory and consequent operating assumptions. I assume for the sake of sanity that my chair is not about to self-destruct, that the air will not suddenly rush from the room, and that the building I work in will not be destroyed by planes flown by madmen. I was wrong about that last one on 9/11. I was wrong about my assumption that I could put off having dinner with my friend David the last time he mentioned it; he died and I never saw him again.

    My assumptions are continually challenged and revised, but that doesn’t mean I don’t have any. Currently I assume that anyone I know could die unexpectedly at any time, and (following advice given me by Connie Willis) that anyone I meet will remember our encounter forever. Therefore I am as kind and engaged as I can bring myself to be, because while I don’t believe it will matter in every case, I do know that I cannot be certain in which cases it will. The only thing I never doubt: my own fallibility. (Doubting my fallibility is a logic knot. Think about it.)

    Note that I said “in normal headspace” above. I’m not always in normal headspace. If I’m practicing magic (the art of changing consciousness at will) I may be temporarily certain of something or other, but that’s a long discussion for another time. These periods last a few hours at most, and I decide WHICH things to be certain of during them while in the rational/doubting headspace.

    There’s a book worth of this, actually. I don’t intend to write it on Boing Boing. But that should give you a decent idea where I’m coming from.

    Antinous 194: Just so. Got me thinking. I think there’s a name for that effect, but I can’t recall it offhand.

  • Maneki Nico says:

    @baldhead

    No Athiest [sic] ever threatened anybody with eternal torment.

    Well, not in so many words. Except maybe that one time in the school yard…

  • JasonEyermann says:

    They had to put Probably because of the British advertising standards so not to “offend” the people who believe in the supernatural. Richard Dawkins wanted something a bit stronger but had to settle for this.
    I think it’s a great idea, but then I would because I’m an atheist.

  • robulus says:

    Semantics.

  • lukus says:

    @ Keneke, 49;

    We’re not all alone – we have each other (as sappy as it might sound).

    One of the main problems I have with religion is the idea that we should suffer (and put up with) our lot in this life, because we’ll get back a lot more once we’re dead. I don’t buy this idea, and if there is a Grand High Master who will put all this into plan then I don’t want to be on it’s conveyor belt.

    I reckon that religious doctrine can be seen as a good game-plan that can be used to improve conditions for the majority. Pick and choose the best from all religions and try to do the best for your fellow beings. If there is a god, and it doesn’t doesn’t see the merit in this then we’re all royally screwed.

  • PeerB says:

    This has probably been stated much better than I can do. But I can’t help but thinking that if nobody ever had come up with the idea about a god, then all this arguing would never have happened, since nothing in the world really points in that direction. (That’s kind of the whole idea with gods: They have to be hiding!)
    Completely unlike, say, black holes. They’re not 100% confirmed yet, but a whole lot of observation points to their existence.

  • Xopher says:

    SSwaan, I’m still too angry to want them to agree with me. At the moment, I’m in the “make them as angry as they make me” stage. I know this is irrational and immature, and that it will pass; only then can I begin the serious work of undermining the CJCLDS by every legal means.

    I actually haven’t yelled at any Mormons yet. The protest in NYC was on a day when I had something else I had to do (maybe my friend’s funeral? I’m not sure). I’m thinking when I get the anger under control I’ll start inviting the skinny dweebs—um, that is, elders to dinner, and telling them exactly why I think it’s absurd to believe in the BOM. While feeding them a nice filling meal. Poor guys are starvin’.

    Meanwhile, I think I’ll make myself a button that says “Ban the BOM!” (Is joke. No book banning.)

  • synkarius says:

    Christians don’t see hell as a threat that they are holding over nonbelievers. They view it as a horrific finality that must be avoided. A metaphor: Imagine that you were on the ground at Hiroshima and you somehow had gotten word of the bombing six hours beforehand. Would your efforts be a threat against the Japanese living there or a plea? It’s not a perfect metaphor, but you get the idea.

    Besides that, the only possible motivation to hold such a threat would be a monetary one: more believers equals more tithers, right? Yet, except perhaps some bad clergy, I think most human beings would rather see their church collapse than their unbelieving mother/father/brother burn in hell. I would, at least.

  • Avram says:

    Antinous @194, you’re probably thinking of the Dunning-Kruger effect, and the curve is more complex than a simple inverse relationship.

  • Takuan says:

    “I know they believe in raising money to put ads on buses. Hmmm…that money would have fed a lot of hungry children. But at least you’re telling the world what you “believe”.”

    if all the money pissed away on cathedrals and temples had been put into feeding people…

  • Takuan says:

    too much time on people’s hands when they can get angry about gods etc. Happily, things will be so hard-scrabble soon that sensible priorities will return.

  • Takuan says:

    yessss…I think we should invite them to dinner…

  • davegroff says:

    @31 ‘But you can’t find writing or argument from Richard Dawkins in which he says something definite about the existence of god, can you? He never says “There is no god.”‘

    No of course not. But he certainly makes a good case that belief in god is a delusion. Based on this, I hope we can we make some assumptions: that Dawkins does not consider himself delusional, that he therefore disbelieves in god, and that he invites us to identify with non-delusional disbelievers.

    Regarding arrogance, I love this quote:
    ‘Oxford theologian Alister McGrath maintains that Dawkins is “ignorant” of Christian theology, and therefore unable to engage religion and faith intelligently. In reply, Dawkins asks “do you have to read up on leprechology before disbelieving in leprechauns?”‘
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_dawkins#Atheism_and_rationalism

    No offense to leprechauns, but among my friends, this is a lot like saying ‘I am debating an idiot’. Arrogant? In the eye of the beholder I suppose.

  • Roach says:

    I’ve got no logical problem with the line “There is problably no God.”

    I only have logical issues when it’s followed up with something like “Be good for goodness sake.” as it is on the DC buses.

  • Anonymous says:

    Anne Lamott said “You can safely assume that you’ve created God in your own image, when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.”

    But anyway, what I read on the watchdog sites indicated that the Catholic Church and their various front organizations paid vastly more into prop. 8 (recent California anti-gay-marriage legislation) than the Mormons did.

    I have heard that the Mormon church actually sent their proselytizers door-to-door to bring out the hater vote, though, and that the Catholics did not. Anybody out there run into any door-to-door Mormons pushing prop 8?

    –Charlie

  • Anonymous says:

    Speaking as a churchgoing theist, I really like this campaign. The “probably” makes a strong contrast to all sorts of absolutist bigotry; it’s like these particular atheists want people to think for themselves, instead of just changing over to a different flavor of dogmatism.

    Cpt. Tim’s “Elephant Post”, and Antonius’ “spastic colon” remark are the best in the thread.

    I wish people would read the articles before commenting, though.

    –Charlie

    PS: I’m with you, Violet. God changes my life all the time, and that’s the way I like it.

    –C

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