Friday, November 12, 2010

Kicking It Up A Notch

Hope you find this news as interesting as I did!

Humanists Launch Largest National Advertising Campaign Critical of Religious Scripture

A national multimedia ad campaign – the largest, most extensive ever by a godless organization - launches today and will include a spot on NBC Dateline on Friday, November 12, as well as other television ads, that directly challenge biblical morality and fundamentalist Christianity.

The campaign, sponsored by the American Humanist Association, also features ads in major national and regional newspapers and magazines demonstrating that secular humanist values are consistent with mainstream America and that fundamentalist religion has no right to claim the moral high ground.

The ads juxtapose notable humanist quotes with passages from religious texts, including the Old Testament, the New Testament and the Quran. The ads then ask the audience to "Consider Humanism." One example is the following pairing: The Bible: "A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent." I Timothy 2 (New International Version) Humanism: "The rights of men and women should be equal and sacred—marriage should be a perfect partnership." Robert G. Ingersoll, in a letter dated April 13, 1878. Another pairing is: The Bible: "The people of Samaria must bear their guilt, because they have rebelled against their God. They will fall by the sword; their little ones will be dashed to the ground, their pregnant women ripped open." God, Hosea 13:16 (New International Version) Humanism: "I cannot imagine a God who rewards and punishes the objects of his creation, whose purposes are modeled after our own—a God, in short, who is but a reflection of human frailty." Albert Einstein, column for The New York Times, Nov. 9, 1930

To see images and videos of the ads and find more information about the campaign please visit:

"Humanist values are mainstream American values, and this campaign will help many people realize that they are already humanists and just did not know the term," said Roy Speckhardt, executive director of the American Humanist Association. "Humanists believe in and value love, equality, peace, freedom and reason – values that are comparable to those of moderate and liberal religious people."

In addition to the television ad on NBC, ads will also be displayed on cable channels. Print ads will appear in major newspapers, including USA Today, the Seattle Times, the Village Voice, the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the Independent Triangle, and the San Francisco Chronicle, and magazines, including Reason and The Progressive. Ads will also appear on Metro trains in Washington, D.C., on billboards on I-95 near Philadelphia and in Moscow, Idaho, and on buses in select cities.

"We want to reach people in every corner of the U.S., from all walks of life, to raise the flag for humanists and show others that they have more in common with us than with biblical literalists," said Speckhardt.

"It's important that people recognize that a literal reading of religious texts is completely out of touch with mainstream America," Speckhardt added. "Although religious texts can teach good lessons, they also advocate fear, intolerance, hate and ignorance. It's time for all moderate people to stand up against conservative religion's claim on a moral monopoly."

All quotes from religious texts were checked by scripture scholars to ensure accuracy, context and proper translation.

The Stiefel Freethought Foundation was the primary sponsor of the Consider Humanism campaign with a $150,000 donation. Another $50,000 was raised from supporters of the American Humanist Association for the launch of this campaign, bringing the total ad buy to $200,000 so far.


  1. The thing about scripture that always puzzled me the most is the way devout "believers" ignore it. What do they believe, if not "scripture"?
    For instance, most hard-core Christian believers I know act like their deceased relatives are already in Heaven, enjoying each other's company and possibly intervening with The Big Guy on behalf of the living.
    I might not believe, but I can read. "Scripture" makes it clear the dead remain dead until "The Resurrection."

  2. Dear Deve - That's long puzzled me, too. And when we claim to know their own book better than they do, we get attacked for overstepping our bounds somehow or "taking things out of context."

    Here's a recent example inspired by these ads:

    Why do Xians think that quoting a Bible passage that kinda contradicts the one we quote somehow refutes what we quoted? Why can't they see that a book that says two contradictory things is an unreliable mess?

    The "taking things out of context" gambit is so old and ineffective. If I posted an entry in which I said women ought to sit down and shut-up, what context might turn that into "men and women are equal"? If I was quoting someone else in order to slam them? If I was being sarcastic? The Bible is doing neither....

    Your "Mom's in heaven with Jesus and Grandpa now" example reveals yet again how religious beliefs that make people feel good tend to replace those that make them feel bad. It's an especially stark example when you consider the many centuries that Christians preached against cremation on the grounds that Christians would someday be bodily resurrected. (Apparently cremation was enough to frustrate the will of an "almighty" gOd.)

  3. Thanks for the link. It amuses me that a private Christian university offers an MA program in Christian Apologetics.
    It highlights the fact that Christian scholars have felt the need to spend centuries trying to justify the Bible's inconsistencies to themselves.
    They have succeeded, obviously, else they wouldn't be Christian scholars any more.

    It's completely self-serving for them to assume that anybody and everybody not persuaded by their weak arguments is ignorant.

    One time I encountered into two guys who had convinced themselves that something they called the Presbyterian Post-Millennial Doctrine "correctly" and adequately interprets these contradictions out of existence. I wanted to ask them if they worship the Bible or the Doctrine, but it was already obvious that everything I said was wrong, so I didn't.

    My favorite line from the article linked to your tinyurl is that atheists can't understand pleasure. I'd sooner expect to be accused by the speaker of hedonism.