Churches are welcome to openly celebrate Christmas. So are individual families, who can put up Nativity scenes in their yards.
But when the local fire department begins promoting the birth of Jesus — by putting up a sign out front that says “Happy Birthday Jesus” and “We Love You” as if they were children — they’ve clearly crossed the line. They might as well put up a sign that says “Jews Don’t Matter” since the implication is already there.
According to the 2008 U.S. Religious Landscape Survey, atheists (who use that label) comprise 1.6% of the population… If there are about 316,000,000 Americans, that means there are about 5,056,000 atheists in the country.
The key word in all that is “about.” There are undoubtedly a lot of Americans who don’t believe in God but who don’t use the “atheist” label. There are probably lots of atheists who lie and just say they’re religious because of the stigma. We also have to consider the margin of error for the survey. In other words, what we have are strong estimates at best. And every survey reveals slightly different numbers.
But not in Egypt. They don’t do estimates in Egypt:
This is a guest post by Marshall Brain. Marshall is best known as the founder of HowStuffWorks.com. He is also the creator of popular websites like WhyWontGodHealAmputees.com and GodIsImaginary.com. His new book How “God” Works will be available in January from Sterling Publishing.
In the United States, December means that hundreds of millions of people are preparing for the big day on December 25. We see the preparations all around us: People are putting up trees in the living room and wreathes on the door, we see lights on buildings and bushes, and then there is the huge retail frenzy that is impossible to miss.
Mixed in with all of this is Santa Claus. You can sit on Santa’s knee and talk to him at the mall, and see Santa in parades all across the country. There are TV specials about Santa, songs about him, cookies in Santa shapes, posters, books, ornaments, etc. Santa has one of the best PR departments on the planet.
Even so, and even though many of us believed Santa to be real as children, I do not know a single adult who believes that the actual Santa Claus exists. You probably find yourself in the same position. You do not believe in Santa, even though you see him everywhere, and neither does anyone you know.