Ohio Newspaper Refuses to Run ‘It’s Time to Quit the Catholic Church’ Ad

The Freedom From Religion Foundation planned to run their “It’s Time to Quit the Catholic Church” ad in the Daily Standard newspaper (based in Celina, Ohio) this Saturday. They paid for the ad a month ago (click to enlarge PDF):

But earlier this week, they were told by the publisher that the paper would no longer run the ad.

What was the problem? Was it too political? Too opinionated?

It can’t be that. The same paper ran a full-age ad from a pro-life group in June “encouraging Ohio Senate President Pro-Tempore Keith Faber… to pass a fetal ‘personhood’ bill.”

So what gives? FFRF has no idea:

FFRF receives “a disproportionate number of state-church complaints from Ohio residents unhappy with religion in Ohio government,” said FFRF Co-President Annie Laurie Gaylor. “It’s hard to educate or make headway with such obvious and blatant favoritism and censorship. What happened to the vaunted marketplace of ideas?”

She is encouraging FFRF members and others disturbed by the Daily Standard’s double standard to contact the newspaper. “Why does this newspaper fear open debate so much it will squelch an important alternative message?”

At least the paper refunded all the money back to FFRF… but it still doesn’t excuse their behavior or why they accepted the money in the first place.

If you’d like to contact the newspaper to speak your mind, the contact information is here.

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.

  • Philo Vaihinger

    Pretty good chance the paper’s owners just disapprove of the FFRF and its message.

  • Johnlev

    It’s a private newspaper is it not?  They can choose what they want to publish no matter how much we disagree w/ it.  However, I’m not a lawyer so if they are breaking some sort of equal protection law, please let me know. 

    • Sonorus2012

      In terms of editorial content, you are correct.  They can publish whatever they want.  But in terms of advertising I think there’s be a problem if for example they accepted ads from Target but not Walmart or from the Baptist church but not the Methodist church.

    • Edmond

      Sure, absolutely they do.  But this is the flip side of having the First Amendment apply only to government.  This goes for other private groups in similar situations lately, like Chic-Fil-A, or the Boy Scouts….

      The existence of their right to do what they want, does not eliminate anyone else’s right to launch a public appeal.  No one will, or can, FORCE them to print anything against through any legal means.  But we all have the right to say “Hey, what gives?” and hope that they intelligently defend their position.

    • b33bl3br0x

       The issue here will be whether they’ve ever accepted an ad from a religious group.  If so, then turning away the FFRF becomes an issue  of violating the civil rights act.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RPPWVLMFKJ7QCHLEVQAR5GSL5M momma J

        No. That’s not the issue at all. The issue is that a newspaper doesn’t agree with the organization who bought the ad space so they are simply saying no. They have the right to do that. Just like the Boy Scouts can say no. 

        What bothers me is that they backed out after already selling the space to them.   That I do have a problem with as it was done in poor taste. They can say no from the beginning, but to go backwards and break contract is pretty poor.

  • Cis21301ac

    I sent them a letter letting them know I canceled my subscription and my fellow veterans at the VFW intend to do the same.

    • A3Kr0n

       I also sent a letter to them.

  • NewAtheist

    wonder if the editor got a visit from the catholic mafia?

    • JohnnieCanuck

      Which makes me wonder which church is/was most affiliated with the KKK. Southern Baptist?

  • newavocation

    This is not so surprising, even the UU World which should be open to all view points canceled an FFRF ad because a handful of people found “questions!” about religion offensive.

  • Margaret Whitestone

    Well, it is Ohio…

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/FDGYHBEWVNGUG763L5X4TON3JQ Nazani14

    It’s probably pure economics.  With more and more people under 50 getting their news, coupons, etc. online, hard-copy papers have to cater to their existing, aging subscribers.

  • http://www.facebook.com/BillionsBillions Zach Vogt

    Wow, a newspaper that can afford to throw away advertising dollars.  Also, what’s a newspaper?

  • M. Mather

    I love how at the end of their ad, they ask for money. “Stop giving your money to the Church and start giving it to us.”

  • jesusistheonlyway

    your freeky nut case, Jesue is our saviour and will always be, read your bible if you do not want to go to hell or purgatory!!! look at all the apparition worldwide of the virgin Mary, look at all the bodies of the saints that remain intact, even after many many years of being dead!, the sole lives on, read , inform yourself, do not be so ignorante lost sole.


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