How Come God Never Talks To Them?

I have no idea what it has to do with Manhattan Mini Storage, but does it really matter?

This one’s not bad either :)

Alright, they can have my money.

(Thanks to Rowdy for the link!)

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • http://religionsetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Joshua Zelinsky

    I’m not sure how comfortable I am with this. It seems to be using a specific philosophical viewpoint as a lead-in for commerce. Imagine if this were a set of advertisements in a Southern state and they were they said things like “The Rapture might come tomorrow but in case it doesn’t here’s a good place to store things.” or  “Richard Dawkins says that life arose by meaningless chance on its own. But even boxes don’t store themselves.” or “Atheists think life is meaningless. But Jesus loves you and wants you not to have a cluttered house.” or just “Jesus is Lord”. How would we react? I expect we’d react pretty negatively. I don’t think the difference between these reactions should purely be that we think we are right and think they are wrong. Using philosophical and political points for commercial gain encourages tribalism and irrational thinking as well as further isolating people with differing viewpoints from each other and minimizing their interaction even more. This seems suboptimal. 

    • Anonymous

      I don’t know that I’d react negatively other than to not patronize their business. Free enterprise and all that jazz?

    • Kevin Bates

      Ugh, don’t they already have ads like that? (in reference to the “jesus is lord” billboard)

      • http://religionsetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Joshua Zelinsky

        Well, yes but generally for churches, not for storage companies. 

        • dauntless

          They do for car battery companies… ugh.

          • http://religionsetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Joshua Zelinsky

            Really? Had not seen that. That’s unfortunate. 

          • Anonymous

             Also for at least one Christian dating service that advertises on TV … double ugh.

        • Rich Wilson

          You can find an ad for just about anything with a fish on it.

        • http://www.facebook.com/ryurack Rebel Yurack

          I’d say a reference to religion (God, Jesus, church, etc.,) is on approximately every 3rd billboard in South Carolina. Doesn’t matter what the company is, or what they do.

          It’s even more prevalent on their websites…

    • Gus Snarp

      You do realize that not only do many businesses advertise that they are Christian and put Christian slogans on their signs, but many now even have “Christian” in their name and there are actually Christian groups that advocate only doing business with Christian companies?

    • Gus Snarp

      You do realize that not only do many businesses advertise that they are Christian and put Christian slogans on their signs, but many now even have “Christian” in their name and there are actually Christian groups that advocate only doing business with Christian companies?

      • http://religionsetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Joshua Zelinsky

        Yeah ok. You and Yurack make valid points. I think living in the North East makes me blind to how much of this crap there is everywhere else in the US. (I suppose I should be more aware of this given how shocked I was when I was in Florida and saw multiple Confederate flags. That was traumatizing. ) That said, I don’t think this is an argument for atheists to do the same thing. 

    • Anonymous

      As long as the ads are tongue in cheek and not vicious personal attacks, I don’t think I’d have a problem (I think the RD example you gave is kind of amusing, for example).  I may choose not to patronise a business that seemed to support a political view I didn’t like or which was trying to proselytise customers.

  • Guest

    I saw another one! A quote from the book of John: “The house of my father has many rooms” (or something like that) – “Clearly Jesus wasn’t a New Yorker”

  • http://twitter.com/TortugaSkeptic A secret red slider

    First of all, Joshua, I’m pretty sure Dawkins didn’t say “meaningless chance”, but if he had it would still be pretty funny if they were clever enough to use something like that.

    • http://religionsetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Joshua Zelinsky

      Oh sure. Obviously Dawkins wouldn’t say that. I’m attempting to imagine the equivalent form of advertisement, and having their hypothetical add use such languages seems plausible to me. 

  • Anonymous

    Interesting yet capitalistic spin. Don’t know that I would read too much into it, but then I rather doubt most New Yorkers will either. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/maik.both Maik Both

    Might be a simple case of ‘be slightly controversial, and watch the ad be displayed all over the internet’.

  • http://twitter.com/jennywags7 Jennifer Wagner

    The reason it has to do with the storage place is because they are insinuating that if Michelle Bachmann becomes Prez then you’d want to move.

    • Trina

      Or perhaps, that the economy will worsen, you’ll lose your home, and put some things in storage while you’re in the (probably Christian-sponsored – *why* are we not addressing this?) homeless shelter, or on the strests…

  • http://friendlyatheist.com Richard Wade

    The first one especially is completely non sequitur.  I don’t get any connection to self storage. It’s like saying “General Douglas MacArthur was kind of a narcissistic douche. Store your stuff in our facility.”

    It’s like somebody pushed the Infinite Improbability Drive Button and got these statements linked with self storage instead of a sperm whale and a bowl of petunias.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1578442055 Matthew Clark

    I took this picture a few weeks ago driving down the west side highway in Manhattan. Same company. I chuckled.

  • Matthew Prorok

    There’s at least one more: http://www.flickr.com/photos/manhattan-mini-storage/6103448427/

  • Ray Higgins

    Great advertising. nicely targeting.  If your looking for a connection between Bachman and mini storage it is you or more accurately we who find it interesting and therefore willing to propogate it. 

  • Gus Snarp

    This is brilliant.  I used to have my stuff in storage at a place that always had some Christian slogan on their marquee, and they were more unintentionally funny than the worst ones you’ve seen on church marquees.  I was actually kind of sad when they got bought out and the messages ended. But I would have done business with this place instead in a heart beat. Sadly, no one else around here would, they’d be drummed out of business.

    I have noticed a new self-storage place in the area with a huge sign. I mean huge. Not very interesting, but the sign dwarfs the nearby sign for Toys R Us. It’s ridiculous. Which makes me wonder, is there an increase in business at self storage facilities related to the down economy and the number of foreclosures? 

  • Anonymous

    I like it! Makes me wish I had something to store in Manhattan.

  • May

    a) Most of us would kill for some free ad space to broadcast our political views as loudly as possible and get people thinking,
    b) They were going to use the ad space anyway for their storage company,
    c) Any publicity is god publicity,
    d) The company owners have now publicly aired their political views while also maximizing their company’s exposure.

    Where’s the bad?
    And as for the converse, yes I would probably boycott a company that uses their ad space to broadcast political views I strongly disagree with, but then again I don’t live in Texas or Alabama and I’m not their target audience. I think calling Michele Bachmann an idiot is a safe bet among New Yorkers, statistically.

    • May

      haha. Any publicity is GOOD. Freudian slip.

    • May

      haha. Any publicity is GOOD. Freudian slip.

  • May

    a) Most of us would kill for some free ad space to broadcast our political views as loudly as possible and get people thinking,
    b) They were going to use the ad space anyway for their storage company,
    c) Any publicity is god publicity,
    d) The company owners have now publicly aired their political views while also maximizing their company’s exposure.

    Where’s the bad?
    And as for the converse, yes I would probably boycott a company that uses their ad space to broadcast political views I strongly disagree with, but then again I don’t live in Texas or Alabama and I’m not their target audience. I think calling Michele Bachmann an idiot is a safe bet among New Yorkers, statistically.


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