Rick Santorum Says ‘Thank You’ to American Atheists for Featuring Him in Their Billboard Campaign

First, it was Pastor Robert Jeffress. Now, Rick Santorum is reacting to his depiction on an American Atheists billboard in an email to his supporters:

“I know, it is shocking,” the one-time [Philadelphia] Inquirer columnist wrote.

And you know what I said back to the American Atheists who purchased that billboard? Thank you. Thank you for helping me publicly express my strong belief that we need to continue to be one nation under God. And I think you would agree with that statement.

A spokesman for the American Atheists, based in Cranford, New Jersey, said he was disappointed at Santorum’s reaction.

“In this country we have separation of church and state for very good reasons, said Dave Muscato. “We are not ‘one nation under god,’ but ‘one nation indivisible’.”

“This is also a reminder that there are strong forces against the fundamental beliefs that you and I hold so dear,” [Santorum] wrote. “They are organizing with determination to transform the very fabric of our country. The stakes are simply too high for us to sit back and ignore the progress they are making.”

Well, you can’t force a theocrat to be ashamed of his call for theocracy. That he acknowledged the billboard at all lends more credibility to the fact that the campaign is working. It’s getting under his skin. He couldn’t win a general election because of his inability to separate his religious beliefs from his political agenda and AA isn’t letting the voters forget it.

I’m still waiting to see if Sarah Palin will respond, but I think she’s smart enough (seriously) to just ignore it.

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://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    “The intolerance of the left, the intolerance of the secular ideology, it is a religion unto itself, it is just not a biblical based religion, and it is the most intolerant, Just like we saw from the days of the atheists of the Soviet Union, it is completely intolerant of dissent. They fear dissent. Why? Because the dissent comes from folks who use reason, common sense, and divine revelation and they want no part of any of those things.”

    – Rick Santorum

    http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2012/02/08/santorum-talks-faith-with-texas-pastors/

    • http://www.facebook.com/travis.myers.102977 Travis Myers

      “Reason, common sense, and divine revelation.”

      Pick two. And don’t pick the last one.

    • Miss_Beara

      “reason, common sense, and divine revelation and they want no part of any of those things.”

      One of those things is not like the other.

    • coyotenose

      “Common Sense” is one of those buzz phrases that almost without fail indicate that the speaker knows he can’t actually defend his claim.

      • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

        I’ve lately come to think “skepticism” is too. People defend all kind of ideas by waving the ‘skeptical’ flag.

        • Achron Timeless

          Well that’s only for the same reason they try to call it “creation science” now, because science actually means something. Skepticism means something worthwhile as well, so they try to slap it on whatever bullshit they’re peddling to lend it credibility. Like an informercial with a guy wearing a lab coat and carrying around a clipboard. He’s playing scientist, or if he has a stethoscope he never touches, doctor.

          It’s just lying. Nothing new about that.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/chidy/ chicago dyke

    Rick is one the prime examples of grifter fundies, imho. he’s about as bright as a broken light bulb. and just as willing to flip flop and any issue, to get elected. he’s a tax dodge (naturally) and a practiced liar. and he’ll do anything to stay in the media limelight, to get attention and $$$ from his sheeple. he just loves him some Roman Catholic Child rapers, but knows for sure god hates homos. a typical believer, in other words.

    go knit a sweater, play with your fetus in a jar, and shut up already, Frothy.

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/ Kevin_Of_Bangor

  • Randomfactor

    He should instead thank Dan Savage for immortalizing him. The gift that keeps on giving.

  • http://atheistlutheran.blogspot.com/ MargueriteF

    Anyone who’s surprised that Rick Santorum is proud of being an ass hasn’t been paying attention.

    • WallofSleep

      Indeed. Though I’d wager he thinks himself more the righteous crusader than the ass.

      What I find odd is Muscato’s disappointment with Santorum’s reaction. For whatever reason, these theocrats are feeling their oats. Rather than downplay their agenda as they have in the recent past, they are more than happy to proudly, publicly own this nonsense. By my way of thinking that is precisely what we’d want from a-holes like Santorum, shamelessly showing their asses for all to see.

      As far as his “Thank you” goes, that’s just a typical, passive aggressive response, and a piss poor attempt at reverse psychology.

      • Thackerie

        I’m surprised he didn’t also say, “I’ll pray for them” – fundy-speak for Fuck You!

  • Achron Timeless

    He’s just happy people still remember his name at this point.

  • Urbane_Gorilla

    Santorum clearly misunderstands separation of Church and State, and why prior Presidents have had to state publicly (Kennedy for example) that they would not allow their religious convictions to control how they ran the business of our nation. But, that isn’t too surprising..He is a Republican.

    • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

      No, no, no, he understands that the difference between Christianity and Islam is that in Islam, Sharia is part of civil law. What we are is a Christian nation, our laws are under God!

      (I’d better add /sarcasm to that before someone blasts me as Poe)

      • Urbane_Gorilla

        Cute….Never really did see much difference between rabid Muslims and rabid Christians anyway… ;=)

    • Stev84

      It’s ironic that Republicans hounded Kennedy to declare that he wouldn’t take orders from the Vatican. A mere twenty years later and they started taking orders from Protestant churches.

      • Urbane_Gorilla

        Worse yet, they ran a Mormon Bishop….Go figure.

  • Mitchell

    What exactly do you believe separation of Church and State means? The abolishment of all cultural symbols that have any root in Christian beliefs? The refusal of religious American to vote with their conscience if it allies with their religion? Those are the opposite of what Jefferson meant when he coined the term.

    • http://www.facebook.com/karen.uncoolmom Cary Whitman

      My son figured it out in third grade when he wrote this on a school assignment, “Seperation of church and state means you don’t have to go to church if you don’t want to.”

      No one is trying to destroy your Christian symbols, plaster them all over your church, your house, your own body, whatever you want that YOU own, but quit trying to turn public spaces into churches. I don’t want to feel like I’m walking into a f*ing church when I go into the courthouse to get a marriage license, or a passport or pay a traffic fine.

    • b33bl3br0x

      Quite simply, the government does not endorse religion. Ways that the government might endorse a religion may include but are not limited to: prayer in school, prayer during official government meetings, erection of a religious symbol on public grounds, injection of religious materials into science classrooms, legislation which serves no function but to further or enforce a religious viewpoint, etc.

    • http://friendlyatheist.com Richard Wade

      To answer your straw man yes/no questions, no, and… wait for it,…. no. If you have any more straw man yes/no questions, the answer will most likely also be no. Ashizrphssh! Excuse me. Sniff. I need a Sudafed.

    • baal

      Mitchell, you as a christian can vote how ever you like, pray as much as you like on private property and as a private citizen even in public spaces. The one and only thing we’re asking for is that the Government not pray in your stead. The courts are the government. Schools are part of the government. The postal service is part of the government. Libraries are part of the government. So when someone is part of the government, acting with governmental power, they shouldn’t lead a prayer. When christian objects are displayed for their christianness in governmental spaces, that’s government endorsing one specific religion. That’s it. It’s really simple. Government talking? No praying. Private talking? OK, pray away the day.

  • Adam

    I actually thought Palin would be the first one to respond.

  • SeekerLancer

    “Thank you,” says Rick Santorum, “I needed this negative attention to attempt to claw myself up from this deep dark pit of obscurity that my political career has fallen into!”


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