You know it’s a myth… and you have a choice.
Life is too valuable to waste on your ancestors’ superstitions.
On Monday, March 5, American Atheists will erect two billboards with identical wording: You know it’s a myth, and you have a choice. One board in Brooklyn will have both Hebrew and English, and the sister board in Arabic will be erected in Paterson NJ. Each will have the Hebrew and Arabic word for Yahweh/Allah on the left side.
A similar board will be launched in California (location TBA).
The purpose of these boards is to advertise the Reason Rally and the American Atheists National Convention to the atheists in the Muslim and Jewish Communities. Insular communities like these are designed to squelch individualism and religious criticism, making the atheists in these communities feel particularly alone — they are not.
They are indeed, quite plentiful, as we gather from emails and the former Jews and Muslims in our ranks. Our new boards acknowledge the closeted atheists in these communities and invite them to the Reason Rally and convention, where they will meet others like themselves, share stories, have fun, and return with enough knowledge and support to allow them to make their own decisions in their lives. They have choices.
These billboards are not meant to inflame or enrage, and while the comparison of how the Jewish and Muslim communities react will be interesting, we expect no violence nor vandalism. Although some in those communities might not appreciate our outreach, we have every right and every responsibility to advertise our organization and our movement as we see fit. In the future, there will likely be more boards in these and other communities, as we extend our hand to the entirety of the very diverse atheistic American population.
The Reason Rally: a Celebration of Secular Values will be the largest atheist gathering in world history. Located on the National mall in Washington DC on March 24, 2012, the Reason Rally will feature the movement’s best speakers, comedians, and free concerts by Tim Minchin and the band Bad Religion.
The National Convention of American Atheists will follow the Reason Rally at nearby Bethesda Maryland. This year’s theme is “come out, come out, wherever you are” and will feature Richard Dawkins, Taslima Nasrin, and a host of experts geared to helping people come out as atheists and live fuller, more honest lives.
[March 1, 2012]