Pennsylvania Atheist Group’s Slavery Billboard Is Now Up

Guess what just went up in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania today?

More background on that billboard here.

The PA Nonbelievers have responses on their website to many of the questions they’ve been receiving in response to the billboard.

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.

  • Gus Snarp

    I still don’t like it.

    But hey, with all the debate around different atheist billboards, has anyone considered doing a properly designed random sample survey in the area?

  • Conspirator

    I like this a lot.  Many Christians aren’t aware this stuff is in the bible.  And those that do annoy me when they try to excuse it by saying “you have to understand it in the context of the times”.  If god was omniscient, you’d think he could have set up a set of values that would stay consistent over time.  Most Christians ignore most of the Old Testament, and most republicans take it a step further and ignore most of the New Testament too.  

  • Anonymous

     Anyone starting a pool as to how many days it will remain up prior to:
    1) Protests / backlash resulting in the company waffling and backing out?
    2) Vandalism?

  • Nordog

    Winning friends and influencing people.

    • Anonymous

      Truth hurts.

    • Heintje

      Sometimes you win friends and influence people by pointing out what they have done or believed wrong.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=553145445 Gordon Duffy

       maybe some of those people need to know what is in their “good book”

  • http://www.facebook.com/richard.tingley Richard Tingley

    Crap meet fan in 3…2….1

  • John Purcell

    There’s an article with local reaction up on the local paper here with a lot of comments.

  • Harrison

    “PAN on Believers”

    Poor coloring choice there…

    • Jett Perrobone

       Yeah, I’m getting this strange mental image of a bunch of Christians standing with a giant skillet balancing on their heads. :P

    • http://LosingMyReligion.ca Chad Kettner

       Yep… should have been PA(orange)NonBelievers(blue).org

    • bismarket

       That’s what i saw too! living in the UK made it even more difficult, it wasn’t until i spotted an “explanation” that i “got it” PA stands for Pennsylvania right?

  • Sgturner59

    Shared

  • Jordan walsh

    I think this is so great!!! All we want is to be equal and to have religion seperate from state….We wouldnt have to go to this length if people in our government followed the laws that are set up to make this country far !!! Also Im tierd of people trying to say the bible was writen in a different time …ok so you just pick and choose what you want to believe out of it.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_LNWAM4DYCN4MLBLHFGDHE2YKZM GloomCookie613

    Hmmm, shall I saunter out this week and hope to catch a peek before it’s inevitably screamed down by the Bible Brigade?

  • Krystie

    I think that this is absolutely awful and in very poor taste.   I don’t see a big difference between this and the pro-lifers who hold up pictures of aborted fetuses.   I just think of the African-American kids who have to see this every day.   This is just hateful and I don’t see anything positive coming from it.

    • Anonymous

       I agree 100%

      Slavery is awful, and in poor taste.  I don’t think anything positive ever came of it.

    • Anonymous

      How is it hateful by pointing out the hatred inherent in a text that the majority of this country considers a moral roadmap?  While I agree it might be tough for some African Americans being reminded of slavery, but I’m pretty sure most of them aren’t exactly unconscious of that history as it is.  Many of those African Americans might still be practicing a religion that was forced upon their ancestors by slave masters, and might be unaware that this very same religion endorsed the slavery.

    • Reginald Jooald

      The State House of Representatives passed a resolution declaring it the “Year of the Bible”, declaring “our national need to study and apply the teachings of the holy scriptures” and that “[r]enewing our knowledge of and faith in God through holy scripture can strengthen us as a nation and a people”.

      This is quite likely a violation of the first amendment, and any way you cut it a very poor choice. All this response is doing is pointing out that the book that the House has declared is supposed to “strengthen” the nation is chock full of immorality.

      • Krystie

        As an out and proud atheist, I totally agree with that.  However, I don’t think that this billboard delivers that message.  I think people will just see an ugly, racist sign and that atheists paid for it.  Are we just trying to piss people off?  I don’t see the point.

        • Reginald Jooald

          I don’t know, maybe the point is that the House is basically urinating over the State’s atheists and non-Christians, and this sign is a way of saying “screw you, we’re not going to take this crap lying down”. I mean, there’s a time for reasoned debate, and then there’s the time when the State declares outright that everyone ought to be a good Christian and follow the Bible.

          I’m not completely sold on the choice of imagery either, but I can understand why they did it.

          • Reginald Jooald

            (and, I don’t think it’s “hateful”. Poor taste _at worst_, but not “hateful”. The Bible *was* used to justify slavery in the US. The Bible *does* contain instructions about slavery and how and when to use it. I don’t see any hatred in the billboard towards either Christians or Black Americans.)

        • Nope

           Yes.  The whole point is to piss people off by quoting the bible.  The whole point is to piss people off by using nothing except the book they declared was representative of their values.

          That’s the point, and you’ve noticed.  I’m proud of you.

          • Krystie

            I don’t see how that is going to bring about any changes, only make them dig in their heels.  

    • http://www.twitter.com/a_okafor007 Anthony C. Okafor

      SLAVERY IS A PART OF THIS COUNTRY’S HISTORY. I’m African American and I see nothing wrong with it

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/O6I2J4NCTTOHLHVWOOZNFOKB2Y John Spraggs

      I can see how someone who feels guilt over the mistreatment of African-Americans might not want to be reminded of this.

      Still, if it makes you squeamish, maybe your morals are better developed than those who justify oppression by quoting from the Bible. Congratulations.

      How long do we have to wait before people stop justifying their abuse of homosexuals with their Bible and start showing shame?

    • Gunstargreen

       You know what’s in poor taste? Pretending like slavery never existed.

      • Krystie

        Am I doing that?

        • Lambert

          Actually I agree with you. The bible is  absolutely awful and in very poor taste . 

    • Bruce Mcintyre

      There are more slaves in the US today than there was at the time of the Civil War.  Most of the new slaves are put to the sex trade, home cleaning, child care, etc.  Don’t ever think that slavery has stopped, because it has only changed it’s face and gone underground.  Look a little and you will see that allegedly Christian people will use these slaves without a thought of what they are doing.

      • Krystie

        Agreed, but I don’t think that this billboard brings any awareness to those issues.

    • bismarket

       Hey, don’t blame us, it’s YOUR Bible.

  • Reginald Jooald

    “I’ll continue to pray for the atheists, that they may find Jesus Christ one day,” said Mayor Linda Thompson

     

    Well isn’t that nice and completely non-inclusive of her.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_LNWAM4DYCN4MLBLHFGDHE2YKZM GloomCookie613

      As I said to a friend who posted the same quote on facebook: “I really wish she wouldn’t bother.  Perhaps her time would be better spent learning how to properly and efficiently do her job?”

    • Ericdbuck

       I like it when people pray for me because I know that I’m keeping them from actively hating homosexuals and/or waging religious wars, if only for a few minutes.

  • Anonymous

     “My master is Jesus Christ. I’m a slave to Christianity. I’m a slave to Christ.” How is that freedom or an American value???

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Vinny-Syko/657154853 Vinny Syko

       Its true, Jesus Slaves

  • Synapsetx

    Should I expect the next theme to be domestic violence, picture of a white woman’s face beaten half to death, all purple and green / swollen and bloody with “Wives, submit to your husbands”

    • Kataton

      Honestly, that would make for a good billboard too. I’m a woman. I’d support that billboard.
      no one likes to have a mirror held up to their own behaviour in such an overt, graphic way. I’d wager that this is the *real* reason people find the slavery billboard so offensive-not because it’s ‘racist’, but because it forces people to consider that their own values may be contributing to montrsous behaviour. Nothing offends someone more than having to do that.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000222604343 Jason Langheine

    the billboard is down as of about an hour ago.  well, it’s half destroyed anyway.  only visible portion left is upper half.  could provide pics now, but i’m sure there’ll be a bunch in the a.m.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=553145445 Gordon Duffy

       oh dear! turns out they dont want people reading from the bible after all

    • Kristin

      There is a pic on the PA Non-Believers website: 
      http://www.panonbelievers.org/

      Certainly didn’t take long, did it?

  • Vistargear01

    most of you have  forgoten, THE BIBLE WAS WRITTEN BY MAN!!!! Its all a bunch a hog wash to control the masses and a whole shipload of of B.LL S.IT… its nice to see the TRUTH finally come out!!!

  • saturn

    i feel sorry for atheists, they are just miserable …paying money to put that kind of message up. rubbish!

  • Anonymous

    this is very  disrespectful to all black people and even the whites
    has eany body ever thought about doing something about education instead of all of this foolish ness and i hope to god that who ever made this billboard will stop wait and think about what they just did to all of the blacks you would not want some one to go and do something like tho about you and dont let me fiind out who yuo are because i work for the state and im warning you to takeit down or 25+ to life…

    thank you and stop being disrespectful to outher cause kharma is comming from every courner


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