Atheist Organization’s Holiday Billboard Causes A Stir In The South
On Monday, the nonprofit group American Atheists launched a new billboard campaign across cities in the Bible Belt. The message? Kids don’t want to go to church, and a lot of adults don’t, either.
The billboards, located in St. Louis, Mo., Fort Smith, Ark., Memphis and Nashville, feature an image of a little girl in a Santa hat writing a letter that reads, “Dear Santa, All I want for Christmas is to skip church! I’m too old for fairy tales.”
According to American Atheists, a fifth billboard co-sponsored by the Southeast Wisconsin Freethinkers has also been put up in Milwaukee. All of the billboards are located in residential areas near schools and churches.
The nonprofit was unable to secure a space for a sixth billboard in Jackson, Miss.
The fact that billboard companies would turn away business because they are so concerned about the reaction by the community to a simple message that not everyone goes to church and not everyone believes in gods shows just how much education and activism on behalf of atheists is needed in the South,” said American Atheists Public Relations Director Danielle Muscato.
Calling the billboards “fire-brand style,” American Atheists says that they are aimed at “in-the-closet” atheists who feel pressured to participate in religious traditions during the holidays.
American Atheists President David Silverman says that a picture of a child was used for the boards because “even children know churches spew absurdity, which is why they don’t want to attend services… Today’s adults have no obligation to pretend to believe the lies their parents believed. It’s OK to admit that your parents were wrong about God, and it’s definitely OK to tell your children the truth.”
Silverman advises people to enjoy time with their family and friends instead of going to church, which will surely not provoke hard-core Christians to respond with fits of vengeful rage.