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One of the displays outside the Loudoun County Courthouse in Virginia:
***Update***: A couple more images of the sign:
(via Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster)
Hemant Mehta is the chair of Foundation Beyond Belief and a high school math teacher in the suburbs of Chicago. He began writing the Friendly Atheist blog in 2006. His latest book is called The Young Atheist's Survival Guide.
Of all the noodles, Angel Hair is my favorite…don’t revoke my Team Atheist card.
Can someone post a closer up of that sign? It looks awesome!
Merry Noodlemas, may FSM bless us, one and all.
Aaargh, may ye have a festive, festivus, filled with pasta and ale to yer gills!
We are such silly, silly people sometiems aren’t we?
We sure are! This equal opportunity idiocy has to stop. The court house lawn is not the place for religious displays or for secular ones in opposition to the former, either. Put it on your own lawn if you must!
I love the fact that “BECOME AN ORDAINED PASTOR” is an actual ad funding this blog.
Don’t you mean BECOME AN ORDAINED PASTA?
(from Boston) : )
The one I see, directly to the right of your post, is a torso in digital camo holding a bible that says, “You are needed here… learn more about the National Guard.”
What’s the significance of the gnome? Pardon my ignorance, I am not well-studied in Pastafarian canon.
“In the Beginning, the Flying Spaghetti Monster (pbuH) created a Mountain, Some Trees and a Midgit.” (You can see the drawing of this event that our Great Prophet Bobby (pbuh too) drew to accompany his Open Letter at the CoFSM website.)
As an ordained minister of the CFSM – I approve this ad.
Ok so I hate to be Mega Bummer Magoo, because I think that poster is awesome and I would totally paint that mural on the wall in my apartment, but here it goes:
I’m just not on board for these examples that we’ve seen of mockery of religion in this particular context.
Don’t get me wrong- I think religion and the “War on Christmas” that fox news is crying about is absolutely stupid. My point is this. While I am 100% on board for free speech, Christians see us as smug and condescending already- this kind of thing can makes us seem like petty bullies. I am all for billboards being put up saying “you know it’s a myth”, but I just think in this context a “Happy Solstice” or something of that nature might be a bit more appropriate. I think that people who don’t agree with our world view are going to see this as just mockery for its own sake.
I think the poster I took more issue with was the “How many myths can you spot” poster among other holiday displays in a previous post. I just don’t think that it’s the correct context to challenge what people think. Maybe I am wrong, but I think these kinds of displays are going to make Christians cling even harder to the religious nature of the season and cause more polarization.
Does anyone else think this time of year would be better spent trying to show that even if we don’t believe that a virgin gave birth to god (or god’s son…I have trouble with that one), we too take this time of year to gather with our loved ones and celebrate?
I would love to hear anyone else’s thoughts on the subject.
We’ll be *damned* no matter the content, so might as well have fun with it.
The point to this (and to all of Pastafarianism, really) is that it’s inappropriate for government to be involved with religion. If the government is going to allow one sect to use public space to push their own beliefs, then it has to allow ALL of them. Excluding a group on the basis that their religion is silly puts the government in the position of making a judgment of one belief being more valid than another. And as much as the godbots want to use public space as a private pulpit, I don’t think they are all comfortable with having the government have the authority to make that call.
Our real goal is to get the government to stop allowing any religious displays at all, and to get the nativity scenes back in the churchyards where they belong. Putting up bland holiday wishes won’t accomplish that. We need to push, and we can push by putting up something abrasive, or something funny. I prefer humor as a weapon.
RAmen, and Happy Holiday!
That’s a really good point. I wasn’t thinking of any legal consequences or benefits. I guess I was thinking more of just general man on the street public opinion.
There is a part of me that agrees, because we should pick our battles. Is it belief, or the abuse of belief that matters?
And by asking that question, the perspective then changes a bit. Is it reasonable to say that someone can believe but not let it run their life? That closet christians are okay? Or perhaps that belief is okay up to a certain point? All of them seem flawed.
In most cases, it doesn’t matter whether you’re a quiet atheist or a loud one – you’re scum. That’s the message that’s been drilled in constantly. The judgment isn’t on the actions, because what you are “in your heart” is what counts.
But, what campaigns like this accomplish is bringing mockery into the public square. Religion is still in a privileged state where everyone must respect it even when they don’t – that’s what even the accommodationists are pushing, and they’re supposedly seeing the faults of religion too! Yet, as more and more instances like this become visible, the window moves, and open discussion and debate can then be engaged in without someone worrying about the tender, sensitive ears of believers.
Maybe there are better ways of doing it; maybe more people can be reached with a kinder message. But let’s face it – the number of truly neutral people out there is small to begin with, and the chances of such a campaign having a negative affect on them makes such concerns trivial at best. If there’s an overall positive affect, even a small one, then I can’t call it “bad.” I’m still fine with struggling for “better” though.
Pick ALL the battles!
There are enough different atheist groups and enough different flavors of atheist that we can fight them all and in whatever way we want to.
I think accomodationists is a euphemism for coward.
Thats why I probably despise them even more than religious extremists because they aid & abet this nonsense called religion.
Personally, I grew up believing that God and Jesus and all that were just as powerful as the adults around me said they were. As a kid, I was as frightened of lapsing in faith as I would be of petting a snarling grizzly. One of the most important contributors to my gradual questioning and eventual rejection of Christianity was watching others mock religion – and not be horribly punished for it.
There’s something to be said for proving to kids that Jesus isn’t going to come down from the cross to kick your ass if you give him the finger. In fact, he just sits there, the same as ever. Completely oblivious and powerless.
I’d like to point out that right now it’s the Pastafarian season of “Holiday”. This starts right after Halloween, and continues until about Superbowl Sunday or so.
So anytime somebody wishes you “Happy Holiday” that’s a Pastafarian greeting, and I am very put out at the xians waging their “War on Holiday”!
It’s nice to have our own fairly tale to celebrate. Maybe someday we can have our own megachurches! Meatballs for everyone! argh.
I’m not an atheist, but this is seriously the most amusing and hilarious thing I’ve ever seen. I literally “LOL”ed.
(I do read your blog from time to time and want to thank you for your thoughtful posts! )
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