Jewish Journal

Atheist billboard: ‘This season, celebrate reason’

by Brad A. Greenberg

December 1, 2010 | 2:43 pm

There is so much good stuff to blog about write now, but I need to be judicious today because I’m a bit pressed for time. I’ll start with the Christmas wars story that my wife sent me. This via CNN:

An atheist billboard that calls Christmas “a myth” has sparked a growing controversy near the Lincoln Tunnel, a 1.5-mile-long twin tube that connects New Jersey to New York.

The full message, which appears with a nativity scene, reads: “You know it’s a myth. This season, celebrate reason.”

Its $20,000 price tag was paid for by American Atheists, a New Jersey-based atheist advocacy group, David Silverman, the group’s president, told CNN.

“We are addressing the 50 million atheists in this nation,” Silverman said.

He said the group erected the sign in a high-traffic area in an effort to challenge drivers to “think hard about whether or not they actually believe in what is, in reality, an invisible magic man in the sky.”

To be sure, I’ve never been a believer in the war on Christmas brouhaha. I just don’t see the substance. But I can’t pretend that this billboard isn’t a direct attack on Christmas.

And the New Jersey billboard is not the only one that atheist organizations have put up recently to challenge religious belief. These ones have fared much better than the “Imagine No Religion” billboard that had a short run in Rancho Cucamonga two years ago. But what do they really achieve?

That has been a hotly debated question by atheists, and how they answer it depends on what side of the aisle they sit on.

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Since launching the blog in 2007, I’ve referred to myself as “a God-fearing Christian with devilishly good Jewish looks.” The description, I’d say, is an accurate one,...

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