Just the other night, Dave Silverman of American Atheists was talking about his group’s new billboard with Bill O’Reilly:
O’Reilly: I’ll tell you why [religion’s] not a scam. In my opinion, all right? Tide goes in, tide goes out. Never a miscommunication. You can’t explain that. You can explain why the tide goes in…
Silverman: Tide goes in, tide goes out…?
O’Reilly: Yeah, see, the water — the tide comes in and it goes out, Mr. Silverman. It always goes in…
Silverman: Maybe it’s Thor up on Mount Olympus who’s making the tides go in and out…
O’Reilly: No no, but you can’t explain that… you can’t explain it…
It didn’t take long for people to pounce on O’Reilly’s ignorance.
Keith Olbermann named O’Reilly the “(Not Really) Worst Person in the World”:
That was fun to watch. But Stephen Colbert absolutely nailed the humor while bringing on Neil deGrasse Tyson to explain how the tides really work (I love the poke against Silverman’s facial hair…):
|The Colbert Report||Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c|
|Bill O’Reilly Proves God’s Existence – Neil deGrasse Tyson|
Granted, this wasn’t really American Atheists’ doing — O’Reilly did it to himself — but it’s another nice benefit to getting major publicity through blunt, aggressive billboards. There’s far more to be gained by putting them up than to be lost due to “offensive” wording.