Atheist Billboards

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 Aug 

Watertown, WI

Wisconsin

Enjoy Life Now There is No Afterlife

 
 
PRESS RELEASE

Local FFRF’er suggests: Enjoy life now

“There Is No Afterlife: Enjoy Life Now” is the message an area member of the Freedom From Religion Foundation is sponsoring for six weeks on a billboard at the entrance of Watertown, Wis., “as a legacy for my grandchildren.”

The message is up at N8690 High Rd., about a mile south of Jefferson Road at the entrance to Watertown, where it is visible to passengers in cars entering the town.

The Lifetime Foundation member, who is elderly and prefers not to be publicly named, recently contacted the Foundation suggesting the new slogan and offering to pay for it. He also expressed the hope that other FFRF members might be “inspired” to place similar messages in their areas on behalf of the Foundation.

The colorful billboard continues the “stained glass window” theme which is FFRF’s signature billboard look, first debuting with the slogans “Imagine No Religion” and “Beware of Dogma.”

“The idea is both to be eye-catching, and to create a little cognitive dissonance,” explains Annie Laurie Gaylor, Foundation co-president of the nation’s largest association of freethinkers (atheists and agnostics) working to keep state and church separate.

“We want the passerby to ponder: What if you saw this message in a church?”

Since kicking off a billboard campaign in October 2007 in Madison, Wis., the Foundation has added several new designs, placing billboards in more than half of the states, and expanding to provocative bus signs.

Also up this week are 20 small billboards in Tampa, Fla. These include several FFRF messages, including “Sleep in on Sundays” plus its new slogan, picturing the head of a penny, saying “In Reason We Trust.” In another August campaign, the Foundation is posting a red-white-and-blue billboard warning, “God and Government a Dangerous Mix” in Monmouth Co., N.J.

“This life is it,” said Dan Barker, Foundation co-president and author of Godless: How an Evangelical Preacher Became One of America’s Leading Atheists (Ulysses Press, 2008). “If life’s eternal, life is cheap. As Emily Dickinson put it, ‘That it will never come again is what makes life so sweet.’ ”

It’s not only “one world at a time” as Henry David Thoreau famously said on his deathbed when asked if he believed in an afterlife. But nor is there evidence of a future, transcendent realm, Barker said.

The Foundation thanks its kind benefactor for coming up with such a positive slogan to represent the freethought point of view.

[August 13, 2010]

 
VANDALISM
PRESS RELEASE

FFRF’s “Enjoy Life Now” billboard vandalized
A billboard saying “There Is No Afterlife: Enjoy Life Now” placed in Watertown, Wis., by the Freedom From Religion Foundation on behalf of a local member, was vandalized. Paint was poured on the billboard posted at the entrance to Watertown at N8690 High Rd., apparently sometime overnight on Thursday, Aug. 26. The vandalized vinyl message was promptly removed by Adams Outdoor Co., on Friday. Adams Outdoor is replacing the message gratis and expects to have it back up around Labor Day to honor FFRF's 6-week lease. The billboard went up on the first week of August. An octogenarian Lifetime Foundation member who prefers not to be publicly named suggested the wording of the slogan as a legacy for his grandchildren. The donor of the billboard is putting up $500 and the Foundation is matching that pledge for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the vandal(s). The donor expressed shock and revulsion that a vandal or vandals would deface his message to "enjoy life now." "At least 45 million honest Americans reject the supernatural idea of life-after-death," said Dan Barker, Foundation co-president, who has written two books about "losing faith in faith" and leaving the evangelical ministry. Barker quoted a poem by Emily Dickinson: "That it will never come again is what makes life so sweet." "There is no evidence of a soul or an afterlife," added Annie Laurie Gaylor, Foundation co-president. "We freethinkers believe the only afterlife we should be concerned about is leaving a secure and pleasant future for our descendants." In order to claim a reward, information leading to the conviction of the vandal or vandals should be directed to the Foundation, which will pass on information to the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department. Contact the Foundation by phone (608/256-8900) or e-mail. [August 30, 2010]
Foundation’s vandalized billboard back up in Watertown, Wis.
The Freedom From Religion Foundation billboard that was vandalized Aug. 26 in Watertown, Wis., has been replaced and is back up for passersby to read its simply-stated and thought-provoking message: "Enjoy Life Now: There is no Afterlife." The billboard has been placed (for the second time) at the entrance to Watertown, at N8690 High Rd., by Adams Outdoor Co., which replaced the vandalized vinyl sign at no charge. An octogenarian Lifetime Foundation member who prefers not to be publicly named suggested the wording of the slogan as a legacy for his grandchildren. The donor of the billboard is putting up $500 and the Foundation is matching that pledge for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the vandal(s). The donor expressed shock and revulsion that a vandal or vandals would deface his message to "enjoy life now." In order to claim a reward, information leading to the conviction of the vandal or vandals should be directed to the Foundation, which will pass on information to the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department. Contact the Foundation by phone (608/256-8900) or e-mail. For more information, see the news release announcing the placing of the billboard, and the news release about the vandalism. [September 9, 2010]
 
 

 Watertown, WI 

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