Let us just come out with it already and let atheists enjoy their own holiday (aholiday or unholiday?). Seriously, why make them take every religious holiday (actually, just the Christian ones) as an opportunity to bother everyone who is trying to enjoy themselves?
I am always appreciative of adherents of the positive affirmation of God’s non-existence sect of atheism. We may now add Dan Barker and Annie Laurie Gaylor to the list (they run the Freedom From Religion Foundation, the FFRF).
In fact, I am always appreciative of any atheist who positively asserts anything at all rather than merely taking jabs against that which they do not believe and Dan Barker and Anne Nicole Gaylor have given us a lot to work with.
On the first-floor rotunda of the Wisconsin State Capitol the following message is being displayed:
At this season of the Winter Solstice, may reason prevail. There are no gods, no devils, no angels, no heaven or hell. There is only our natural world.
Religion is but myth and superstition that hardens hearts and enslaves minds.
Note that this statement was originally made by Anne Nicol Gaylor who was the principal founder of the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) and directed it 1976-2004, the statement was her aphorism. Dan Barker and Annie Laurie Gaylor (Anne’s daughter) now direct the FFRF.
The statement is said to not merely be a quote from Anne but is an FFRF maxim that is use every year as a Winter Solstice message that they put on display in order to counter religious displays in government buildings.
Let us consider these sentiments:
At this season of the Winter Solstice, may reason prevail: atheism neo-paganism religion on display on government property (and yes, I know).
There are no gods, no devils, no angels, no heaven or hell: please prove this positive assertion.
There is only our natural world: please prove this positive assertion.
Religion is but myth and superstition that hardens hearts and enslaves minds: embarrassingly and grossly generic condemnation, but happy holidays to you too.
I beg your pardon ahead of time for the sarcasm (but truthfulness) of that which follows:
Dan Barker unveiled the message accompanied by the virtually uncontrollably enthusiastic roaring crowd of “about a dozen people.”1 This is the sad state of our media, “about a dozen people”? Could they not have used satellite imagery to take photos from space run the data through some sort of quantifying thingy and get an accurate count of the crown in question? Could a reporter not count to twelve, or thereabouts? You know what this means do you not? It means about 9 people and they are stating “about a dozen people” to plump it up, might as well say, “A baker’s dozen.”
Dan Barker stated, “Over superstition and faith, we think reason may prevail.” I find such sentiments fascinating coming from the founder of the Barkerian sect of Freethought which only allows “free” thought to occur within very narrow parameters (see Freethought Without Forethought?).
“Religion…hardens hearts”? This is fascinating coming from a man, an organization, which ears their shekels by being full time besmirchers of those with whom they disagree.
Moreover, the FFRF erected a billboard in Madison, Wisconsin that reads, “Reason’s Greetings” “Employing a stained-glass motif with holly.”2 And in 11 states, billboards stating “Imagine No Religion.”3 They posted another that reads, “Beware of Dogma.”
Imagine no religion? I do not have to; I just have to read the history of the last century. Of course, “Annie Laurie Gaylor, said the billboard is meant to encourage a debate about religion by evoking lyrics from a John Lennon song.”4 Indeed, but this atheist anthem is not about encourage a debate but is a call to conversion that concludes that “the world will live as one” only once we all “Imagine there’s no heaven…No hell…no religion” and then only if “you’ll join us.” You mean we will get along when we all agree on everything, great!
In Southern California the “Imagine No Religion” billboard has been taken down. And, uuuuummmm, ok, well, for whatever it is worth, “In September, the city asked another billboard firm to take down a vagina rejuvenation procedure.”5 Annie Laurie Gaylor “says the city shouldn’t be censoring speech.”6 This is fascinating coming from a woman who earns her shekels by encouraging the restriction of free speech.
Although, “The city’s redevelopment director, Linda Daniels, said the city did not demand General Outdoor take down the sign, ‘but they respected the concerns of residents.’”7
Dan Barker has brilliantly elucidated the fact that “Christians don’t own the month of December.”8
Yes, I noticed that during December celebrations are held for Christmas, Hanukah, Ramadan, Kwanzaa, Solstice, Festivus and miscellaneous. I was wondering why those “CEO of December Inc.” royalty check were not coming in.
Anne Nicole Gaylor chimed in with “We nonbelievers don’t mind sharing the season with Christians.”9
And that is just the point, the holidays are shared with each wishing each other a merry/happy what’have’you. We do not put up holiday displays that condemn the overwhelming majority of the people on the planet. If someone wishes you a fill in the blank with a holiday that you do not observe just say, “Thanks, you too” and move on with your life, maaaaaaaan. If Christmas is overrepresented in the USA it is because, try to follow this train of logic, the majority of the USA are Christians.
But why not take the Reason’s Greetings billboard and replace the slogan with other statements made by Dan Barker: