More Atheist Billboards! February 13, 2010

More Atheist Billboards!

There’s a slew of new atheist billboards that have popped up in the past couple weeks, courtesy of United CoR!

In Seattle, Washington:

In Sacramento, California:

In Tampa Bay, Florida:

I’m not hearing as much negative publicity about these campaigns as much I’ve heard with others (really, why should there be any?), but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. These billboards are becoming so commonplace — and so is, I hope, the idea that atheists are all around you — that they’re not making as big of a splash.

Does this mean we can declare Mission Accomplished and move on to new methods of advertising our presence?


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  • Zaz

    I wouldn’t say mission accomplished, but I’m happy to be able to say we’re that much further in our mission to become equally appreciated. Theists are realizing that we’re not going away, and we’re not a product of some kind of societal phase. We are real, and we mean what we say. We believe whole-heartedly in what we say, therefore we command respect, just like that one guy in Rome. You know the dude with the crazy costume. He has a cool hat, though..

  • Philadelphia needs more by this point, too. I’m not sure if it’s not well-known by this point, but a little more wouldn’t hurt.

  • The idea that we can declare Mission Accomplished is a bit premature, I think. We need to keep up with these things, we need to add buses in different metro areas, we need to have bumper stickers lick this, we need internet banners like this.

    As Zaz says, we need to make sure that our target audience knows that we are a continuing presence and not a societal phase.

    Because the target audience are those atheists and agnostics who think they are isolated, isn’t it?

  • Derek

    “Theists are realizing that we’re not going away, and we’re not a product of some kind of societal phase.”

    To be fair a lot of us already knew that. A fair number of us are fairly vocal in the Christian community about your rights to express your beliefs. Personally, I like the billboards…and oddly enough agree with both of them. But certainly if we can put up a God billboard then you can put up these…something about freedom of speech.

  • I noticed recently that there is a billboard in Manchester, NH that only reads “You will meet God when you die” and has a phone number. It’s written in white text against a black background that has a red EKG line going across it. I prefer the atheist ads that pretty much just say “hey, we exist!”

  • Ron in Houston

    Well, when I see one in Houston without a big fuss then I MIGHT be willing to say mission accomplished.

    Actually, Bush would tell you that you probably need to be careful with that phrase.

  • littlejohn

    They may not believe in god, but apparently all three groups worship the same cloud formation. What’s up with that?

  • Neon Genesis

    Can we have atheist commercials at the Super Bowl next?

  • sc

    I am an atheist and proud of it but I just find these ads to be so unoriginal, and just as bad as the Christians ads that we all trash.

  • muggle

    No, keep them coming. Besides, they’re more for us than them (do we have to be all us vs. them, anyway).

    Um, if they disappear won’t we look less mainstream? Looking mainstream is good. Helps us accept each other and live together in harmony. Isn’t that more the ideal than proving ourselves right?

  • What muggle said…

  • One little comment on this billboard thing…wouldn’t it be better to refer to a non-existent deity as “a god” or maybe even refer to the plural “gods” or just spell the name in lower case? It seems like a validation or recognition of this god as being real when one writes or says, “I don’t believe in God.”
    Just a thought…

  • Stephen P

    @Godless Monster: the capital letter doesn’t say anything about the entity in question being real. I mean, you’d write Sherlock Holmes or Hogwarts with capital letters, wouldn’t you?

    I’d suggest it’s now time to turn up the volume a little bit. Go from billboards which bend over backwards to be uncontroversial (to anyone with a grain of fairness) to ones which nibble around the edge of controversy. Like “It’s not what you believe that matters – it’s what you do.” Or “Two hands working achieve more than a hundred hands praying.”

  • sc

    If you really want people to accept your muggle, come to LA ahah. I just don’t think these are effective in making people aware of the Atheist cause, but will be used as fuel for the right wing extremists.

  • muggle

    Earth quakes, mud slides, coyotes, brush fires, … Thanks for the invite but I’ll pass.

    Naw, I’m fairly anti-social actually so I’m not wound up real tight about being accepted.

    But I would like to be left the hell alone and if these signs play their part in desensitizing people to our doubting existence and making us seem more common place, I’m all for it. If they get as common as the crosses or at least as the Stars of David, I think people will be less shocked and reactionary that we exist.

    And that would be a good thing. Hey, I can dream, can’t I?

  • Derek

    “(do we have to be all us vs. them, anyway).”

    That’s been bugging me too.

  • Jim

    I don’t see it as “us vs. them”, though I’m sure that’s how many of “them” perceive it. I see it as reaching out to people who are in the closet or are on the fence in their own beliefs but held back by cultural taboos. I see the intended audience as already being atheist but not yet knowing/realizing/accepting it.