Posts with the tag 'Atheist'
Ron Heather is the Christian bus driver who has refused to drive the UK atheist buses, creating a news story which has been in the press a lot over the past 24 hours. He and I have something in common: we’ve both taken exception to websites promoting belief systems different to our own.
The website I took issue with was JesusSaid.org, advertised on buses and tube cards in June last year, which – as you can read here – promotes the idea of God’s wrath and eternal punishment. It insists:
“God’s wrath includes the prospect of eternal punishment – it is appointed to men to die once and then comes the judgment (Hebrews 9:27). You will rise from the dead and will face the Judge and know that you rejected His kind and merciful answer. You will be condemned to everlasting separation from God and then you spend all eternity in torment in hell. Jesus spoke about this as a lake of fire which was prepared for the devil and all his angels.”
Our adverts were designed to counter these rather alarming ideas.
Conversely, the website Mr Heather didn’t like much was… er… this one. The Guardian revealed today that “Heather said he had been particularly offended by the name of the website featured on the ad, atheistcampaign.org.”
Maybe the words “atheist” and “campaign” unsettled him for some reason, but they really shouldn’t have, because this campaign is as gentle as any. I truly don’t think he’s visited this site, because we’ve taken great care to make it very peaceful and upbeat (as we have with the entire campaign). We wanted to create a calm place where people could talk freely about their beliefs – the very opposite of JesusSaid.org, in fact. We believe in freedom of speech, so we rarely delete comments, but the main content of this site is very mild, friendly and straightforward.
If Ron ever does visit, he’ll be very welcome here. But somehow we don’t think he will.
Here’s the quote I gave to the press yesterday:
“We live in a democratic society, which will only function as such if we are allowed to peacefully express different viewpoints. The bus companies have accepted the adverts, and nobody imagines that bus drivers wholeheartedly endorse everything advertised on the sides of the buses they drive.“
An Atheist Ad In A Hong Kong Newspaper
Firstly: lots of you have been asking when the atheist buses will roll out onto the streets. We can’t give you a date yet I’m afraid, but it will definitely be in January – so not long to wait now! We’re very grateful for all your support – and with the help of the fantastic Simon Bishop, we’ve just broken the £130,000 mark, which is amazing when you remember that our original target was just £5,500.
Secondly: the American Humanist Association’s ABC-inspired bus campaign has been running across Washington DC for over a month now, and though it hasn’t met with approval across the whole of the US, it’s a big step forward. For more on the AHA campaign, please visit its official website.
Lastly: an atheist has taken out a quarter-page advert in a Hong Kong newspaper, saying “Consider – you don’t need to believe in a god or have any religion, just take a break, celebrate and enjoy the holidays with your loved ones – that’s the reason we need holidays, and that is all we need!”
Anonymous atheist of Hong Kong – we salute you!
Wear your atheism on your sleeve
Official Atheist Bus Campaign t-shirts and badges are now available from our trading partner Blue Apple Music – please visit the store here
. The t-shirts come in a choice of black and white, and in all sizes from S to XL. We reckon they’ll make great Christmas presents!
We’re sorry it’s taken so long to bring you these – we’ve been rather overloaded with campaign work, but we’ll be updating the site much more often from now on, so please keep checking back for more news on all things ABC-related. Car stickers and bumper stickers to follow…
Welcome to AtheistCampaign.org! Our aim is to raise the profile of atheism through innovative and exciting advocacy projects, starting with the Atheist Bus Campaign.
We’ve linked to all the leading atheist, humanist and secular organisations and initiatives. Please visit them to learn more about the resources and support available to non-religious people. You can join the BHA or NSS (or FFRF if you’re in the US), subscribe to New Humanist magazine (or Free Inquiry), renounce your religion, and maybe even decide to set up your own atheist blog (if you do, let us know). If you’d like your site to be included on this list, please write to us using the form on the contact page.
We’ve also enabled comments to encourage discussion of all campaigns and topics. We hope you enjoy AtheistCampaign.org, and look forward to your suggestions for changes and new campaigns.