Christian Graffiti on an Atheist Poster

Graffiti seen at Western Carolina University:

The person who originally put the flyer up took it down after seeing the graffiti. I would’ve suggested otherwise.

Leave it up there.

Let people see “Christian Love” in action.

Then, put up a sign next to it with an arrow pointing to the first sign, reading “This is why we need the atheist group” (or something along those lines).

Hopefully, no one considers retaliating against any of the Christian groups’ posters. Because we should be better than that.

On a side note, one clever commenter on Reddit wondered why Jesus would save him if he were, in fact, a homosexual. According to fundamentalists, didn’t Jesus condemn practicing homosexuals to hell? Others responded by suggesting there should have been a comma after the second word, changing the meaning of the message.

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.

  • Tom S

    Does anyone keep track of the number of incidents of this sort?  It would be good to get a sense of the magnitude of the problem.  

  • observer

    You know what, I think the “faggot” writing is by someone else. That is to say, the poster was vandalized by two different people.

  • Simbannister

    Gotta admit, you have to admire the brusqueness of their message.

  • Mandie

     idk, the handwriting looks the same

  • Cortex_Returns

    Doubt it. Looks like the same marker was used, given the thickness of the marks. And look at the a’s and u’s. They look like they match.

  • http://twitter.com/DaliDager Sherry Young

    I’ve had the feet snapped off the “Evolve Fish” on my car.  It still says “EVOLVE” regardless of the vandalized feet.

  • http://twitter.com/davehodg Dave Hodgkinson

    Did Jesus himself have anything to say on the subject? I think not.

  • RobMcCune

    Looks similar to me, my guess is that the vandal had to bend their arm at an angle as they got closer to the bottom.

  • RobMcCune

    Given all the kinky stuff fundamentalists are into I wouldn’t rule out that the person had a foot fetish.

  • http://twitter.com/SouthernHeathen Gordon Maples

    The only retaliation that should be planned is to put up more flyers. A lot more flyers. And, of course, keeping the internet in the loop. 

  • http://annainca.blogspot.com/ Anna

    My Darwin fish was stolen once. Apparently it’s pretty common for them to be vandalized.

  • Pseudonym

    That’s going to be hard, I suspect. I work on a university campus, and I see defaced flyers every single day.

    Incidentally, we don’t know that this was defaced by a Christian. It could have been a troll.

  • Carey Morgan

    There is no way to know whether the graffiti was done by someone who actually held the view it expresses or by someone who wanted to make Christians look bad. Many many thoughtful Christians reject this mix of bigotry and twisted dogma. Let’s not let this incident “prove” anything in our minds except that not everyone has learned to disagree civilly.

  • NewDawn2006

    It looks like the vandal just kept getting more and more pissed as he/she wrote.

  • http://boldquestions.wordpress.com/ Ubi Dubium

    You can get replacement feet from evolvefish.com.  They come in six-packs.  Of course, they are only for replacing our broken fish, couldn’t be for anything else, oh, no.

    Nobody has ever bothered my jolly-fish.  Of course, they probably don’t know what it is.

  • Tom S

    Sure, but that’s just a practical problem and it’s the same problem regardless of the target of the hate speech.  Groups like the ADL and SPLC get reasonable numbers, enough to know both the magnitude of the problem and variations in intensity over time.  I was just curious if there is a group that tracks anti-atheist hate speech.  

  • thatgirl

    my only thing to your witty thing is how do we know that the person who put this was actually christian, like a practicing following christian, because it doesn’t take a lot of knowledge of the christian faith to know that the basis of most christian sects is that Jesus is the savior, and as a christian who believes that this is ridiculous and no matter what/who you believe in or don’t believe in you should be respected for that fact this could have been some tool on the hall who felt ballsy enough to scrawl his “feelings” on this person’s poster, I feel very bad for this person because that doesn’t promote a safe university atmosphere or living area at all, and of course as a christian i literally throw up my hands and I’m like ugh, really “those people” if people would just stop and leave people alone we’d all be a little better.

  • Fritzy

    Based on what?  Because no real christian would ever do such a thing?  Doubtful; the hand writing looks consistent throughout.  How banal and predictable.

  • Anonymous Atheist

    Not that I’ve ever known of, but it sounds like a good idea. There’s countless posts like this scattered across random blogs and news sites, and countless more incidents that go unreported.

  • Mrs Schaarschmidt

    Look, the graffiti is unacceptable and wrong and all that…but this is a college campus. I don’t think it’s fair to judge “the Christians” for this one. Bored dumb kids are a dime a dozen and it is far more likely that this was done by a bored kid than a hateful Christian.

  • Nox

    How do we know that a person who expressed aggressive homophobia, antagonism to atheists, lack of respect for other’s right to expression, and friggin “Jesus saves”, was a christian?

    Don’t know. Guess he must have been a buddhist or something.

  • Drakk

     Nice false dichotomy you’ve got there. Because there’s no such thing as bored, hateful, Christian kids, right?

  • Sceptic

    Can easily be done by one of your own to lay blame on others.

  • Brian Pansky

     “Bored dumb kids are a dime a dozen and it is far more likely that this…”

    to the statistics, drakk-man!

  • OregoniAn

     Yeah… and any time you see a swastika spray painted on a wall it’s been placed there by one of those Jews.. and if I had a dime for every time a Black burned a cross on their own front lawn.. Go fuck yourself Sceptic  =)

  • Nox

     How many christians have to do petty dickish things in the name of Jesus, before it becomes conceivable that a christian might do something petty and dickish?

  • Keith Collyer

    I like the point about the comma. As written, it is saying that Jesus (a Hispanic name?) is saving you an oversized meatball, perhaps because you couldn’t get to dinner on time?

  • Georgina

     uk sends people to prison for months for graffitti.

    Seems if it is against muslims then it is “hate speech”. 

  • Xalvarez07

    Hi, my name is Xavier, and I’m a Christian.  I’m sorry there are “Christians” going around doing that stuff. Truth is just because someone claims to be a Christian doesn’t make them one, especially “fundamentalists”. Here’s the thing is a gangster a gangster just because he wears the clothes? Is a cowboy a cowboy just because he wears a cowboy hat? No, so why would you assume that a person who says they’re a Christian be one. A Christian is supposed to reflect Christ wherever he goes and if he is not then he’s not practicing right. Also just because we’re Christians doesn’t mean we’re perfect. Some people say, “I’m not good enough to be a Christian”, and I say “I’m definitely bad enough to be one”. Point is we make mistakes and some of us aren’t who we say we are, sad but true.

  • http://twitter.com/InMyUnbelief TCC

    You can spare us the “no true Scotsman” stuff.

  • JoFro

    Wait a minute, how are we assuming a Christian did this? Where is the evidence that it was a Christian who did this?

  • Tom S

    “No true Scotman” — awesome reply.  

  • Erp

     So where is the dividing line between true Christians who aren’t perfect and those who think they are Christian but aren’t?  Or is it god only knows.

    For us non-gods it is easiest to say that those who call themselves Christian are Christian since there is no other standard definition of Christian that doesn’t leave a large chunk who think they are Christian out in the cold.   For membership in a particular denomination it is easier; a Southern Baptist is a member of a church affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention though not always full-proof .

  • Tom S

    Is the University investigating this as an act of hate speech?  That seems to me to be the most important question here.  

  • ReadsInTrees

    I have a SCIENCE fish with rocket fins…..no vandalism so far! ‘Course, I live in Maine, one of the least religious states.

  • Octoberfurst

     Uhh because of the reference to Jesus. (Duhh!) 

  • Octoberfurst

    Excellent reply OregoniAn!

  • cipher

    Thanks for the apology though, Xavier. I know there are Christians who are troubled by this sort of thing.

  • Lucrezia

    This Jesus guy could also be saving a bundle of sticks for someone, or some bundled iron! ^_^

  • Kennynipp

    I live in Tulsa Oklahoma. -The belly of the beast as we call it, and I have 5 anti-religious and anti-Republican bumper stickers, as well as two ‘Evolve’ fish emblems on the back of my truck. Over the years I’m happy to say that not one time has a single item been vandalized. In fact, all I do get are notes of support and appreciation left on my windshield when I leave it in a parking lot. I have countless people pulling along side me while driving, honk, and give me an enthusiastic ‘Thumbs up’.
    If this happens in Tulsa Oklahoma, then we are far from alone. SPEAK UP! BE LOUD BE PROUD!

  • Zach

    Maybe in the future you could throw something like this beneath a fold? I know that once someone starts using “trigger warning” it can sort of snowball, but I come to FA to read about things, not read abusive graffiti by Christians including THAT word. 

  • Zach

    Sorry, I said “read about things” which is too generic. I mean normal FA-things concerning the atheism movement. blah. 

  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/ Hemant Mehta

    I’ll think about it… Just about everything I post could be a trigger for someone and I have no idea what upsets different people. But I’ll try to be more clear about what’s to follow in the headlines.

  • The_L1985

     …I need that fish.

  • The_L1985

     I know this is hard for you to accept, but not all Christians are as loving as they are supposed to be.  I’ve known the more hateful ones.  They really are this bad and worse.

  • The_L1985

     If a person, when asked, says, “I am a Christian,” then that person is a Christian.  Regardless of how well he/she actually follows the teachings of Jesus.  There are good Christians and bad Christians, and both are generally equally sincere in their belief in Jesus-as-Messiah.

    “A Christian is supposed to reflect Christ wherever he goes and if he is not then he’s not practicing right.”

    I agree, but even the ones who are Doing It Wrong are still Christians.

  • The Other Weirdo
  • The Other Weirdo

     Jesus himself wanted no truck with those who were not with him. http://bible.cc/matthew/12-30.htm.

  • Artor

    Because nobody has a magic Xtian-detector that we can wave over someone to tell if they’re a “True Xtian.” Until you invent something that can reliably identify “True Xtians,” We’ll have to identify them by their words & their actions. You might wish to look up “No True Scottsman” as part of the R&D process.

  • NickDB

     George Bush was Jesus?

  • kellson

    Christ said nothing whatsoever about homosexuals. I’m aware of this because Fundamentalists offer his silence on Jewish dietary laws as the reason they no longer observe them. Of course, they also say that Jesus was silent about homosexuality only because it was utterly unknown to him [despite its presence in that era's Greek, Roman, and Persian empires].

    Untangling the internal and coinciding inconsistencies of the claims is tiring.

  • Pseudonym

    Interestingly, he is also quoted as saying the exact opposite.

    Now, let’s play a game I like to call “Armchair Textual Critic”. Let’s assume that only one of these two quotes is accurate, and the inaccurate one is a corruption of the accurate one. Which of the two is more likely to be accurate?

    BTW, you have all the information you need to answer this.

  • WobbyWilliams

    I think the person who wrote ‘Jesus saves you faggot’ is an extremely immature person. Also can you tell me where Jesus condemn practicing homosexuals to hell in the bible? because that’s not how I have read it.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/3PY3H4S52IA6BP6XTJSRD2CPDU BBW Chaser

     I have seen plenty of similar posts made around Youtube for example, apparently coming from “nasty Christians”, until one looks at the poster’s channel, then you see they are actually not Christian at all, but just trolling. Either this is just to get people fired up, or to give false “evidence” as reasons to bash Christians. You’re at the top of a slippery slope making the assumption that because it mentions Jesus, ergo it *had* to be a Christian that wrote this.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/3PY3H4S52IA6BP6XTJSRD2CPDU BBW Chaser

    So are you saying that posers exist in all walks and facets of life *except* Christianity? That somehow Christianity is the one exclusive group that’s immune to, and completely devoid of posers? Wow, must be something to it then if they got that kind of immunity!


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