Press Release: Atheists Jab at Mormon ‘Elders’ in Convention Campaign

Matching Billboards Challenge Assumptions, Stereotypes

Salt Lake City, UT—On Tuesday, American Atheists announced a Salt Lake City billboard campaign to promote its upcoming national convention with two new designs challenging the assumption that all Utahns are Mormons. One billboard features a group of senior citizens with the message: “Think all of Utah’s ‘Elders’ are Mormons? Think again! We’re Atheists!” The other champions a group of 14 beaming students with the same text but substituting “students” for “‘Elders.’”

SLC Elders Billboard

SLC Student Billboard(Scroll to bottom for copyright release)

 

Both boards invite the public to “Celebrate Reality: April 17–20” at the American Atheists National Convention in Salt Lake City by registering at the atheists.org website.

“‘Utahn’ does not mean ‘Mormon,’” said American Atheists President David Silverman. “There are many Utahns who want nothing to do with Mormonism, and this is especially true when it comes to creating laws, which must serve everyone. While the ‘elders’ joke referring to Latter-day Saints missionaries is supposed to be cute of course, the message is a real one: The assumption that Utahns are Mormon, specifically the encroachment of Mormon values into law, is dangerous and unconstitutional. This is especially clear in the recent and ongoing struggle for Utah’s LGBT population to gain equal rights for marriage.”

“This is one of the reasons we chose Salt Lake City for our 2014 National Convention, and one of the conversations we want to energize between religious people and the atheist community,” Silverman said. “All citizens, young and old—and not just the sizable atheist population of Utah—deserve laws based on secular principles, and a society that understands that this is beneficial to everyone.”

In bringing these topics to light, Silverman referred to a March 2012 article from The Salt Lake Tribune, one of the largest newspapers in the area. The article, entitled “How Utah’s capitol marches to a Mormon beat,” opens with the words, “In Utah, the question isn’t whether the LDS Church wields hefty political clout, but how it does so.” The article reveals that Mormon politicians regularly apply their religious values to lawmaking. According to the article, “a nod of approval from the LDS hierarchy is usually needed for bills affecting [immigration, alcohol, gambling, and LGBT rights] to proceed, according to a questionnaire sent to legislators by The Salt Lake Tribune.”

“It doesn’t matter what the ‘Latter-day Saints hierarchy’ thinks about these or any other bills,” said Silverman. “America is not a theocracy. The Mormon church does not have veto power over anything beyond its own internal policies and especially not over laws affecting everyone, atheist or Mormon on anyone else. This is exactly why our founders included First Amendment protections of separation of religion and government in the Bill of Rights. Atheists have an equal voice, and our National Convention will put the spotlight on that.”

Posing for the ‘Elders’ billboard are four Utah residents, and on the ‘Students’ board, 14 area students. (Several have volunteered to make themselves available to the media; contact [email protected] for information.)

“It’s important to me to appear on this billboard because growing up, I didn’t know there were other people out there who felt the same way I do,” said Melanie Hall, one of the atheist students who posed for the billboard. “I grew up here in Salt Lake County and it’s cool to see that there are others who think the same things. I want to let others know that they’re not alone.”

“We were in contact with many atheist students,” said Public Relations Director Dave Muscato of the student billboard. “However, it was difficult to find students who were in a position to feel comfortable being open about their lack of belief in gods. This is exactly the kind of stifling influence we are talking about. I cannot imagine that any Utah student would feel workplace or family pressure not to appear on a billboard for the Mormon church. That multiple atheist students were fearful of going public because of their jobs or school enrollment or family relationships—in a country that guarantees freedom of religion—demonstrates the hold the Mormon church has on the liberty of Utahns, and it’s why it’s so important that we bring our National Convention to Salt Lake City.”

American Atheists held its National Convention in Salt Lake City once before in 1981. The American religious landscape has changed drastically in that time; according to Pew Forum, the percentage of Americans not affiliated with any religion more than doubled between the 1980s and 2012, from well under 10% to about one person in five. Among the “Millennials” (those Americans born in 1980 or after), this rises to one in three: http://www.pewforum.org/2012/10/09/nones-on-the-rise/

The billboards, located along I-15 in Salt Lake City, run through the month until March 30. Both billboards measure 14’ by 48’ and are located on the east side of the interstate. One is 0.5 miles south of 33rd Road South and the other is 0.75 miles south of 33rd Road South. The billboards both face north and are visible to southbound traffic. See below for links to the billboard graphics.

The American Atheists 40th National Convention will take place Easter weekend in Salt Lake City. The convention will feature such speakers such as former NFL punter Chris Kluwe, Survivor®: Philippines winner Denise Stapley, Grammy-nominated Spin Doctors bass player Mark White, Academy Award-nominated director of The Simpsons Movie and Monsters, Inc David A. Silverman, NASA and SETI-renowned astrobiologist Dr. David Morrison, Reverend Barry Lynn of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, Maryam Namazie of the Council of Ex-Muslims, popular bloggers PZ Myers and Greta Christina, and American Atheists President David Silverman. The convention will also feature a costume dinner, live music, stand-up comedy, an art show and silent auction, national and local exhibitors, and childcare options for attending families. The convention takes place the weekend of April 17-20, 2014 in Salt Lake City, Utah.

The aforementioned Salt Lake Tribune article about Mormon-influenced Utah lawmaking: http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/home3/53709967-200/lds-church-says-position.html.csp

Billboard Images

“Students” (1045×302)
“Elders” (1044×302)

American Atheists grants permission to press to reproduce and redistribute these billboard images under the conditions that absolutely no cropping or editing is performed and no overlays cover, hide, conceal, or distort any part of the images (including the title bar with website at the bottom), and that American Atheists is credited for providing it.

  • Pingback: New Atheist Billboard Campaign Shows That It’s Not Just Mormons Who Live in Utah

  • Vivi Blue

    Brilliant! I love seeing familiar faces on these billboards. =)

    Great article, but it’s always hilarious to hear non-Utahns talk about Utah roads. It’s just 3300 South, AKA 33rd South. No “Road” in the name. ;)

  • Allen B. Carter

    Nice!

  • HorseshoeNail

    “Celebrate reality”? Yet another passive aggressive attack on belief.

    Why not either:
    (a) Just come out and call religious people crazy, or
    (b) Have a message of your own instead of simply attacking other people?

    I have nothing at all against atheism, but I do have a problem with trying to make yourself look better by insulting other people.

    • skyhaskins

      Why are you opposed to Celebrating Reality? The Earth (4.6 Billion years old, NOT 6000) orbits the Sun – Not the other way around. Reality — even though the Church gave Galileo a hard time about it. Evolution IS how living organisms have been able to populate EVERY niche environment posessing the requirements for life. Reality. There is NO QUESTION about it. The 14 th Ammendment guarantees EQUAL rights for ALL. Reality. The TRUTH will set you FREE! Try some. Dont fear it – I know it can be difficult to accept facts that contradict what you have been sold. Was I REALLY that gullible to believe all that? Reality. Celebrate. Open the door to FREEDOM from dogma.

      • HorseshoeNail

        You do realize that the majority of Christians (and the Catholic church itself) also beleve that the world is billions of years old and that the theory of evolution is correct, right? In fact, according to this Pew poll, white mainline Protestants are actually MORE likely to beleve in evolution that those who are religiously unaffiliated

        http://www.pewforum.org/2013/12/30/publics-views-on-human-evolution/

        This is the problem with many atheists and these billboards in particular: they base their views about religion and believers on very small group of non-mainstream Christians. THAT is also reality.

        • HorseshoeNail

          Data from Pew

        • skyhaskins

          Yes those examples d not apply to ALL theists, however, from my own experience,, virtually ALL of the misinformed – and yes I DID use the word delusion(al) – are in fact Christians. I was raised LDS (Mormon) in Southern California. My father worked for NASA at JPL in Pasadena. For far too long, I remained affiliated with the church, not willing to “pray” for acceptance of obviously false (fictitious) information. I had a hard time understanding how obviously otherwise intelligent people could reconcile Science with Religion. Science IS the most successful method to approach the most likely explaination for observed phenomena.. The performance By ADULTS in te USA on the evolution question is APPALLING. The ONLY reason is mass delusion – CAUSED by reliigion – clinging to false beliefs despite overwhelming EVIDENCE to the contrary: Delusion. Emotional attachmement is NOT a vvalid argument for the veracity of any claim.. It is NOT only a “very small group of non-mainstream Christians.” I am talking about. ALL belief in the supernatuural is irrational. Even Atheistic Bhuddism failed the test due to a belief in reincarnation. Ancient explainations, and the emotional attachment to them is logically invalid and UNNECESSARY. Wishing something to be true does NOT make it so. What I DO believe, is that it is harmful to soceity for a large percentage of the population to be incapable of discerning FACT from Fiction. It is really NOT that difficult.
          My suggestion is this: When a belief is challenged by contradictory EVIDENCE, DON’T become hurt and defensive. That is not productive. Instead, truthfully INVESTIGATE the evidence, and if the evidence does contradict your prior belief, the BELIEF (hypothesis) is the one that should be modified in order to more correctly conform to evidence. That is the triumph of SCIENCE – willingness t o LET GO of inadequate explainations. DONT GET MAD! Get EDUCATED.

          • HorseshoeNail

            So did you read my post and the data, or are you just ranting no matter what the data says? Not very scientific of you. No comment about a scientific poll showing that white mainline protestants believe in evolution at a higher rate than unaffilated persons?

            And please don’t go around calling everyone you disagree with “uneducated”. I am VERY sure I have significantly more education and academic credentials than 95% of the posters here (including you), but I also believe that it’s okay and normal even for educated people to disagree on many issues.

          • StopShoutingKid

            Got it all figured out, don’t you … except how to turn off caps lock ….

          • skyhaskins

            Aparently YOU cannot tell the difference between ALL CAPS ans specific words – EMPHASIZED using caps. Just trollin’?

          • HorseshoeNail

            Capitalizing things doesn’t make them more true. And while I did take the time to read your post, it seems you’re unwilling to either read or address the fact that the majority of believers (with the exception of one radical subgroup), have no problem believing in evolution.

            Your pontificating (no pun intended) about how everyone who believes is unwilling or unable to accept scientific facts is simply inaccurate. You tell other people to accept facts but ignore facts that contradict your own (highly personal and emotional) prejudices.

            Hypocracy is never pretty, no matter which side it’s coming from.

          • Cthulhu21

            Too bad you don’t seam to notice the hypocrisy you spew out a lot of the time.

          • HorseshoeNail

            It’s clear that you simply want to call people names now. I provide scientific evidence to backp my statements and you then switch to insults. I had a lot of respect for you during our conversations, and it’s disappointing that you’ve sunk to this level.

          • Cthulhu21

            I realize that I’ve made an assertion with no evidence to back it up. But I don’t see the need to since I don’t wish to talk to you anymore. Mostly because it causes me more stress than anything else and I’m not really getting much else out of this disscussion (even posting this is making me stressed out). You don’t need to reply to this since I won’t be checking to see that you did. Bye.

          • HorseshoeNail

            I’m sorry to hear that. In that case I wish you well and all the best for the future. Take care.

          • StopShoutingKid

            Okay, it seems from your other Disqus posts that you’ve been using weed for a very long, so your long, incoherent, and rambling post about how you’re “free” and know the “truth” now makes perfect sense — you most likely are one of those potheads who’s been baked for so long that you have lost the ability to recoginze that what you’re saying isn’t deep or brilliant at all …

    • Cthulhu21

      Question; did you used to call yourself rargos? Just wondering.

      • Rargos much?

        HorseshoNail’s real name is Raphael Argos. He lives in the Raleigh area of North Carolina, graduated from NCSU, is no longer an alumni there do to a disagreement over concealed firearm policies of the college. He works or did work in some field of radio, has a concealed carry permit for handguns, and owns multiple firearms. He enjoys Starbucks products and is/was a member of at least one North Carolina gun lovers’ organization. He’s a regular troll of this site and is not quite as intelligent as he would have you think that he is.

  • HorseshoeNail

    For a group of people who claim to value factual data, American Atheists seem to have no trouble publishing misleading stats about belief. Here is the actual chart from the study quoted by AA — “atheists” are only about 2% of the population and has been trending mostly flat.

    http://www.pewforum.org/2012/10/09/nones-on-the-rise/

    “Not affiliated” does not equal “atheist”, If you read this article it says that 68% of the “unaffiliated” believe in God.

    Either the people at AA don’t actually read the articles they cite, or they are intentionally lying about their contents.

    • Lucy Harris

      There was no lie in the article. It mentioned “Americans not affiliated with any religion.” You’re the liar.

      And notice all the groups are going up, atheists, agnostics and the rest of the nones. Most former theists transition out of theism in incremental steps, most don’t go straight from Baptist to atheist. The totality of religious affilition polling is good news for atheists and bad for religionists.

    • Laurence Lu

      Slight quibble, 68% believe in a god OR a universal spirit. I’m betting that a sizeable portion of the unaffiliated believe in a universal spirit or some other higher power than straight out God.

      • HorseshoeNail

        Agreed. But how is belief in a “universal spirit”different from belief in a “straight out God’ from an atheist point of view? Or are atheists okay with “spirits” but not with “gods”?

        Just curious

        • Laurence Lu

          There is a difference, not great, but not subtle either.
          From an atheist point of view, that ‘univerasal spirit’ is vague. We don’t mean ghosts or spirits from the grave; at least, I understand it as an entity, that’s it. Not a literal creator of the entire universe who watches over everything.

          • HorseshoeNail

            That makes no sense at all – how can you call yourself an atheist and believe in immaterial spirits?

          • Laurence Lu

            An atheist does not believe in a god. Anything else, I can’t speak for others, no matter how unreasonable I think they may be.

            By the way, it doesn’t seem like you were just curious. Your past comments don’t provoke a meaningful discussion. Even though you claim to have 95 percentile education, it doesn’t translate very well here. Not only that, I don’t think I’ve seen more than one thread of comments in which you did not have to have the last word.

          • HorseshoeNail

            Interesting. You post comments where you try to differentiate between “spirits” and “God” based on your own vaguely defined perceptions of each. I post comments in which I provide emprical data (from the same source AA cites) that shows that more mainline Protestants believe in evolution that the religiously unaffiliated, yet I am not “provoking a meaningful discussion”?

            You question my academic credentials and say that it “doesn’t translate very well here”. Forgive me for asking, but what criteria are you using? I provide data, logic-based arguments, and don’t resort to the vulgarity, bigotry or name-calling that seems to be the norm for atheists posting here. Or perhaps you’re simply unwilling to accept that there are actually academics who believe in God? A church-going professor was not a oddity even 25 years ago.

            And as for having the last word — that really depends on the other person, doesn’t it?

          • Laurence Lu

            ‘Interesting. You post comments where you try to differentiate between “spirits” and “God” based on your own vaguely defined perceptions of each. I post comments in which I provide emprical data (from the same source AA cites) that shows that more mainline Protestants believe in evolution that the religiously unaffiliated, yet I am not “provoking a meaningful discussion”?’
            You provided one, and insulted condescendingly with two others.
            God: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/God?s=t
            Spirits: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/Spirits?s=t
            I can’t speak for others, as I said. This is just my interpretation.
            ‘You question my academic credentials and say that it “doesn’t translate very well here”. Forgive me for asking, but what criteria are you using? I provide data, logic-based arguments, and don’t resort to the vulgarity, bigotry or name-calling that seems to be the norm for atheists posting here. Or perhaps you’re simply unwilling to accept that there are actually academics who believe in God? A church-going professor was not a oddity even 25 years ago.’
            Whoa there! No need to get defensive about your education! I trust you. Now, if this trust is incorrectly placed (which I doubt it is), than I have no reason to respond to you at all.
            I’ve got a little empirical evidence, if that’s what you need. http://www.pewforum.org/2009/11/05/scientists-and-belief/
            Only 33% of scientists believe in a God, and that doesn’t imply a god of any religion. I never said that there were not scientists who believed in a God. It’s just that the proportion is much lower. 83% of the overall Americans believe in a God.
            ‘And as for having the last word — that really depends on the other person, doesn’t it?’
            Nope. You’re one of the two people in any given exchange, and it’s not their fault they’re not as persistent as you are.

          • HorseshoeNail

            You’re only quoting part of the study.

            According to the poll, just over half of scientists (51%) believe in some form of deity or higher power; specifically, 33% of scientists say they believe in God, while 18% believe in a universal spirit or higher power.

            If you want to split hairs about the difference between God, deity, and higher power, go ahead. But cite ALL the data next time.

            It’s also not a survey of all scientists — just the 2500 members of a given academy.

          • Laurence Lu

            Only 33%+18% of scientists believe in a higher power? Compared to the fact that 75% of those who don’t believe in God believe in a higher power of some kind? You’d be better off not citing that only 35% of those who don’t believe in a God believe in some kind of higher power at all!
            By the way, my grandfather, science teacher, and two friends of my parents (three out of four who are scientists, one a theoretical physicist) each said that they believed in some kind of higher power, just not a God. I haven’t met for than a dozen people who openly revealed their religious views other my close family, but there it is.
            Also, I’ll quote another part of the study for ya.
            It’s mildly amusing to see that barely 30% of the scientist population are actually Christians, and that more that 52% identify with a religion, but only 33% believe in a God. Assuming that all unaffiliated do not believe in a God, you’re still looking at 40% of the ‘believer’ population aren’t actually believers, and just identify with the religion that they agree with somewhat, or the one that they grew up with.

          • HorseshoeNail

            I’m sorry, but you’re jumbling together a lot of numbers in a very confused way.

            I think the difference between believing in “God” and believing in a “higher power” is nothing more than semantics. The fact remains that more than half of the scientists in this survey believe in a supernatural entity that (presumably) is superior to us.

          • Laurence Lu

            God, with a capital ‘G’, implies an entity that is explicable, and can interact with us. A universal spirit has no such requirement. Semantics can be somewhat significant.

          • HorseshoeNail

            I think you’re simply trying to downplay the fact that over half of the scientists surveyed believe in some kind of supernatural entity. Your own peronal definition of the distinction is not necessarily the same as those responding to the survey.

          • Laurence Lu

            My opinion isn’t the same as theirs, I fully acknowledge. However, theism is believing in a god or gods. The universal spirit, is a spirit, that, is universal, by definition. Semantics, yes, but the poll distinguished it. By a broad definition, 41% asnwered that they didn’t believe in a god, which means that they are atheists. Agnostic-atheists? Convinced atheists? No matter. It’s a disputed definition.

          • HorseshoeNail

            With all due respect, you’re simply babbling at this point.

          • Laurence Lu

            I pointed out specifically that 41% of the scientific community did not believe in a God, which, is, by a broad definition of atheism, which is the absence of belief in a God, means that 41% of scientists are atheists.

            Well, we’re about done here. You’ve degraded to insults now, which don’t provide an effective online discussion.

            I’ll leave you to have the last word, as you always have, and move on. Good day to you. :)

          • HorseshoeNail

            If 41% of scientists are non-belivers (as you yourself say), then 49% — i.e. the majority — are believers.

          • LogicSniper

            Um… That’s 59%, pal. And, let’s review – how many religions are practiced today? I’m willing to bet that the 41% atheist presence is the largest group in that survey, if you divvy up the believers into their individual faiths.

          • HorseshoeNail

            I would comment on your other posts (as you have to mine), but it appears you prefer to keep them private. Apparently you like to research other people’s statements but don’t want people doing the same to you — quite the double standard, don’t you think?

          • Laurence Lu

            Funny. I didn’t to look past this thread of 70 comments to realize that you comment and everrybody’s posts that you disagree with. Don’t go with rhetoric here, this isn’t a William Lane Craig debate.

  • Cthulhu21
    • HorseshoeNail

      Hard to take her seriously when her arguments include the words “pissy,” “bullshit”, and “dick.” She also relies on inaccurate stereotypes and outright distortions and then calls believers “narrow minded”. The whole video sounds like she’s having an argument with her boyfriend.

      • Cthulhu21

        Hard to take you seriously with all your cherry-picking.

        • HorseshoeNail

          “Cherry picking”? Go to YouTube, look at the titles of her other videos, and then explain to me how anyone takes her seriously.

          If she were a pimply-faced, 300 pound guy NO ONE would watch her videos — perhaps we could agree on at least that? :)

          • Cthulhu21

            How about you actually watch her vids before you pass final judgements. A lot of them are satire on the subjects they cover.
            When I say “cherry picking” I mean you’re only selecting certain details, like titles of vids and the instances of swearing, and sqewing it to fit your straw-man. So how about you actually watch them without your apperantl bias and then we can talk about it.

          • HorseshoeNail

            Against my better judgement (because I don’t want to be adding to her hit counts or her supporting advertisers), I actually watched well over half of her videos — the main reason I’m here is to try to better understand how atheists think. Unlike all too many people on both sides of this issue, I actually do my homework before talking about something.

            But to be fair: pick some quotes from her videos, post them here, and I would be more than happy to discuss them. Better yet, post the video name and the time offset (MM:SS) and that way you can be sure that I acutally watched the video (or at least that part).

          • Cthulhu21

            I think we can start with this: Messages to Christians from an Atheist” 2:47-3:48.

          • Cthulhu21

            Sorry for the late reply; I tried to doing this a while ago but it didn’t actually get uploaded for some reason.

            We can start with these: 2:42-338 and 5:30-6:56 from “Message to Christians from an Atheist”. I’ll post more after we talk about these ones first.

          • HorseshoeNail

            1) She claims that opposition to homosexuality and gay marriage is due to religious belief and therefore religion should be attacked. I would be curious as to how she would explain those same laws in non-Christian counties like China, which is officially atheist.

            2). She admits not all Christiams feel that way, and instead of agreeing that it’s possible to be a Christian and support gay marriage, she starts saying how she’s the victim of criticism for unfairly stereotyping Christians (roll eyes)

          • Cthulhu21

            Seeing as how religion is a collection of concepts and ideas why shouldn’t religion be subject to criticism? Granted, there are many atheists, self identified or not, who are very harsh towards theists for their beliefs. I would like to point out however that many theists get, as Jaclyn has also pointed out, uptight whenever they hear or read about criticisms about religion and see it as an attack against them. Why do you see an attack on an ideology as an vicious assalt on your particular group?

            Here’s a good way of explaining your question on China: “All religious groups must register with the government, which regulates their activities, makes personnel decisions, and guides their theology. Even then, only religious groups belonging to one of the five state-sanctioned “patriotic religious associations” (Buddhist, Taoist, Muslim, Roman Catholic, and Protestant) are permitted to register with the government. Some groups, including certain Buddhist and Christian sects, are forbidden, and their members face harassment, imprisonment, and torture.

          • HorseshoeNail

            Didn’t answer my question: if opposition to gay marriage is primarily based on Christian religious beliefs, why is gay marriage not allowed in countries that have few to no Christians, such as most of Asia and Africa?

          • Cthulhu21

            You remember my saying that you “cherry pick” certain details to make your argument sound better than it is?
            “Didn’t answer my question: if opposition to gay marriage is primarily
            based on Christian religious beliefs, why is gay marriage not allowed in
            countries that have few to no Christians, such as most of Asia and
            Africa?”
            Your post right here is exactly what I mean by that.
            Are you forgetting that many Muslims share similar views on homosexuality as many Christians do?

          • HorseshoeNail

            So it’s the Muslims that are preventing gay marriage throughout Asia?

          • Cthulhu21

            I think while she knows that not all Christians are against gay marriage, she is annoyed that many christians (as well as those from other faiths) are giving her crap about lumping them all together. Even though she is only pointing out what people of faith can do in the name of their beliefs that can cause harm to other people.

          • HorseshoeNail

            Sorry, but you just keep repeating the same things over and over without listening to what other people say.

            She admits that not all Christians oppose gay marriage, but attacks them as a single group. She claims religion is the obstacle to gay marriage, but doesn’t address the fact that many non-Judeo-Christian or Muslim countries also prohibit gay marriage. And instead of criticizing a specific issue (gay marriage), she simply attacks religious belief in general.

            If you’d like to discuss those, I’d be happy to. If you’re just going to repeat the same things over and over and defend an incedibly bigoted and anti-intellectual YouTuber whom you apparently have a crush on, then I wiill wish you well and end this conversation.

          • HorseshoeNail

            1) As an engineer who works with science, data, and math all day, every day, I find the stereotyping of believers as scientifically ignorant offensive and unconvincing, ESPECIALLY when it comes from people who couldn’t take a derivative or invert a matrix to save their lives.

            2) It’s ironic to see her wondering why some scientists are believers. One of the main reasons I believe in God is that a truly open minded scientifically-minded person would recognize the handiwork of a far superior being in looking at the universe and human life. I firmly believe in the big bang, evolution, etc. but as an engineer it’s impossible for me to accept that such a wonderfully balanced and stable, yet incredibly complex, system is a random occurance.

          • Cthulhu21

            1) There are many believers around the world that are not as educated as you are and are scientifically ignorant and closed minded due to their government’s take on religion.

            2) Why do you believe that the universe around us is the product of a superior intelligence when there isn’t visible proof of it? (I’ll probably give up on talking to you depending on how you answer the 2nd one)

          • HorseshoeNail

            Nonsense. There are a lot of uneducated atheists too. Most people’s ignorance of scientific concepts has NOTHING to do with their religious beliefs or lack thereof.

          • HorseshoeNail

            I’ve answered this many times already — the proof is the existance of such an enormously complex yet stable system itself. Speaking as an engineer and former university instructor/researcher, it’s much more likely that this system was designed and set into motion as opposed to being the product of billions of “lucky” coincidences.

          • Cthulhu21

            Yep, uh huh, I see that we most likely will not be going anywhere with this. So, yeah good luck with spreading your hypocrisy.

          • HorseshoeNail

            Sad that after I spend the time to research your points of view, read your sources (which you yourself did not read), watch videos you recommended, etc. you then accuse me of “hypocrisy”

            We don’t have to agree, but I had hoped for a respectful, honest discussion — instead you end it with name-calling.

        • HorseshoeNail

          No comment about how popular her videos would be if she were an old, fat, bald guy with bad skin and yellow teeth?

    • HorseshoeNail

      And when you’re finished watching her debunking Christianity, you can watch this gem (one of many such videos on her YouTube channel).

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9RoaNHPYaLU&list=TLetIvZCE36K1g_W5AWAeKBDktqpy0Tkyq

      • Cthulhu21

        Right, you’re point being?

        • HorseshoeNail

          You posted (again) a link to that video — are these videos the best that the atheist community can do?

          • Cthulhu21

            If you don’t like her videos you should try “the Atheist voice”.

          • HorseshoeNail

            The questionis why you like her video enough to post a link to it — she’s just a bigoted and uninformed attention seeker.

          • Cthulhu21

            Because she makes very good points. Is she bigoted for calling out the bull many religious people commit? I say no because many of things that many theists are accused of doing are happening like halting scientific advancement in certain fields, being bigoted against others and forcing their beliefs on them. If your not these things (I know your at least two of those examples) then I don’t have a problem with you. Don’t get all huffy just because me and other bring up the issues that many theists cause if you know your not a part of it, overly defensive much?

          • HorseshoeNail

            Funny how people who disagree with atheists are “huffy” or “defensive” ….

            Her so-called points are simply wrong is most cases and are not an accurate portrayal of belevers. I cited a Pew research study above that shows white mainline Protestants are MORE likely to believe in evolution than the religiously unaffiliated. Claiming that believers are anti-science is factually incorrect.

          • Cthulhu21

            Funny how some people like to project on to others.
            She acknowledges that not all believers are anti-science but she does point out the examples of believers who are whether they think they are or not.
            And that study you brought out? Lucy Harris says it best:
            ” There was no lie in the article. It mentioned ‘Americans not afiliated with any religion.’ you’re the liar.

            “And notice all the groups are going up, atheist, agnostics and the rest of the nones. Most theist transition out of theism in incremental steps, most don’t go straight from baptist to atheist. The totality of religious affiliation polling is good news for atheists and bad news for religionists.”

            Makes it pretty clear that your just cherry picking information to make your position seem more viable. That servay may state that prodistants

          • HorseshoeNail

            Honestly — did you read the entire article and look at the data yourself? Or did you rely on someone else’s comment about an article she most likely also didn’t even read.

            You’re also overusing the expressing “cherry picking”.

          • Cthulhu21

            Do you have a better term I could use?

          • HorseshoeNail
          • HorseshoeNail

            Note that American Atheists cites this very study, so it’s hard to claim that the authors are biased.

          • Wolfen

            You’ve seen all one million videos? You must be obsessed, freak.

          • HorseshoeNail

            Uhmm … she’s made about 50 videos.

            But to your point: I think it’s important to do your own research instead of basing your opinions solely on other peoples’ opinions — don’t you agree?

          • Cthulhu21

            I think he ment all the videos posted by self-identified atheists.

          • HorseshoeNail

            I think he probably just sits around making uninformed comments about things he he knows nothing about. Calling someone who actually does research a “freak” speaks volumes about his own attitudes towards doing one’s homework.

          • Laurence Lu

            Closer to 150.

          • HorseshoeNail

            Not all of them are about atheism.

          • Laurence Lu

            I understand. You didn’t specify, however.

        • HorseshoeNail

          Another non-judgemental video from the creator of “Message to Christians from an Atheist”
          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IckUFLaNJ4k

          • Cthulhu21

            Again, your point?

          • HorseshoeNail

            I’m trying to understand what you find “post-worthy” about that video.

          • Cthulhu21

            I’d say it’s post worthy as far as wanting to show people (atheists mostly) how ridiculous people can be for their entertainment. A lot of her videos are meant to be satirical in nature and not really meant to make a point beyond poking fun at the subject matter and showing how ridiculous they are.

    • ScienceAndFaith
      • HorseshoeNail

        Yes, a deep thinker to be sure

  • chuck

    I’ve been asked by more than
    one person why it bothers me so much for someone to say they are going
    to pray for me. I will try to explain:
    1st: I view the need for religion to be a socially induced psychosis or
    metal deficiency. I want to have no part of this practice.
    2nd: More often than not the phrase “I’ll pray for you” is said in a
    condescending context.
    3rd: Let’s take for granted that the person saying “I’ll pray for you”
    has perfectly good intentions. It is still offensive to include me in
    their socially induced psychosis. I do not have the same socially
    induced psychosis so the statement has no positive affect on me.
    4th: It is actually demeaning to assume their socially induced psychosis
    is going to do me any good. Furthermore, since their prayers are just
    in their head and really go no further than that shouldn’t they say “I’m
    going to pray for me” because they are the only ones getting anything
    good from their prayers. What they really should say is “I am unable or
    unwilling to help you but I’ll pray about it so I feel better about not
    helping you.”

  • ProudHumanist

    I wanted to be on the “elders” billboard but the photos were taken during a work day. Otherwise you’d also see this 61-year-old atheist face there! I’m very glad the organization didn’t go with the aggressively anti-Mormon billboards I understand they initially wanted. This is a much better way to go. (Oh, and Vivi Blue is right–there’s no “road” in the street names. It’s 3300 South or 33rd South. No “road” in there at all.)

  • ProudHumanist

    Also wanted to note that once again the LDS church told legislators how to vote: a change to our idiotic liquor laws was proposed but the leaders of the church issued a statement that they see no need for any changes to our liquor laws. Result: the law didn’t pass. We live by LDS rules here and it’s sickening.

  • paul berry

    Mormons are good People, lost in doctrine, and there are good atheists, lost without doctrine! There is a blog that asks one question that needs three answers too Christians and Atheists! So few can answer, yet, the blog stays open minded showing atheist links and Christian links.. View at http://guardianofthefuture.blogspot.com/ … Respect to all born of Adam/Atom/God Deuteronomy 32:8 {also go too http://adamandevewordresearch.blogspot.com/ too learn of Science now ending aging and sickness}

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