Atheists protest at Comic Con

Comic Con

Every year a group of Christian protestors show up at Comic con to tell all the attendees they are going to hell. This neat little letter came to me from Brian who lives in San Diego and got tired of it.

I moved to San Diego 8 years ago from Dayton, Ohio. I’m a graphic designer and since the age of 12 I have preferred the scientific method over outdated religious dogma. When attending Comic Con a few years ago I was walking to the convention center and encountered a large group of people holing up religious signs and yelling over the crowd with a megaphone. A few of the signs alluded to the FACT that people were going to hell for some of the most ludicrous made up reasons. “Heaven or Hell, You Choose!” is a sign that I remember, but what if both of those options are dead wrong?

Atheists don’t show up a churches and try to convince people that their story is nothing more than a story (I might know what church this guy goes to now and maybe I should show up with a sign and a megaphone). I don’t tell people that they are wasting their time praying when they could be doing something productive in life yet this is exactly what this guy was doing to the Comic Con crowd. It angered me, it infuriated me that people would inappropriately interrupt a fun weekend where people were trying to enjoy their own form of escapism.

Angered, he decided to put on a protest of his own the next year. Throughout the course of a poll he ended up designing signs with these phrases

- Science Saves More Lives Than Jesus

- Religion the ultimate placebo effect

- These people are going to hell for annoying you at comic con (this was the crowd favorite)

- Your creation myth is silly, be honest with yourself, no one knows

- The universe is more complex than your vague book could have ever imagined

- Science is after the way the universe really is, not what makes us feel good  - Carl Sagan

- Two things are infinite: The universe and human stupidity; and i’m not sure about the universe  - Albert Einstein

- Keep thy religion to thyself  - George Carlin

On Saturday, July 20th me and four friends, three sign holders and two photographers, went down to crowed Comic Con not knowing how we would be received. My house is four blocks from the madness at the convention center and during our walk down the street with the signs people were stopping us, taking pictures, shaking our hands and thanking us.

Once we arrived down at the trolley stop next to the convention center the crowd was clearly on our side. Over a couple hundred people gathered around the church goer with a megaphone and us. This was more than the guy with the megaphone expected but he did an amazing job of talking for the entire two hours we were down there. The crowd easily turned on him when he ran out of things to say and resorted to anti gay and sexist comments.

The people were not happy and one hour into the protesting of protesters about six police officers gathered around the crowd to make sure no physical altercations would happen. People yelled in the megaphone mans face while his mindless lemmings stood behind him with a few religious signs and did not say a word. Two gay men started making out in from of the megaphone preacher and he responded with “You are all perverts, you’re going to go home and get AIDS and syphilis.”

This is the kind of classy individual we were dealing with. I stumped him with the following question. Can you name the ten commandment? He paused, locked up, and astonishingly could not even name one! I said “Come on! Thou shall not kill. Let’s go buddy, I’m helping you out here.” He was not interested in any discourse, he was a memorizer and all he was doing was spewing out the stuff he crammed into to his thick head since the time it was shoved in there at the age of two. He spoke of Jesus being the only super hero you need after all he did walk on water and turn water into wine. I, in my superman t-shirt, responded with “Those are pathetic super powers! My can fly over water…and shoot laser beams out of his eyes! It also takes a lot more than a cross to stop Kal El!”

 
Brian will be protesting next year and I’ll give you any updates as they come and how you can help.
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About Paul Loebe
  • Cat

    Love the headless costume

  • Jacob Stick

    This is very interesting. I rather enjoyed the article.I am a born again Christian and I do not believe these “christians” were at all right in protesting Comic Con. They are merely there to ruin harmless fun and bring everything down. I think you have made an interesting point to these people. Long live freedom of speech. Long live freedom of religion.

    • Paul Loebe

      You’re the right kind of Christian. Most of my friends are Christians, actually. And they are all in agreement with me about freedom of religion and freedom of speech. These people at Comic Con are the extremists.

  • kamauh s

    I totally agree with what your saying the church is full of mindless flunkys

    • Ashley Brooks

      I don’t! I think that it’s people who are mindless flunkys. Have you noticed that whether under the direction of a pastor or president, people act just as mindlessly? People, in general, have no true concept of what is so crudely referred to as “free will,” because there’s scarcely a soul who chooses to act any thoughts of their own. Most people just regurgitate the repeated phrases of others until, whether or not it is true, it becomes woven into the very core of our culture. Take, for example, the phenomena of “global warming.” A disturbing majority of people agree that global warming is not only occurring, but is caused solely by human activity, and that it will cause disastrous events to occur in the very near future. This, of course, is absurd. The truth is that the mindless peons of the human race find it so incredibly painful and difficult to challenge conventional wisdom with thoughts that are their own, and not the re-used thoughts of some greater mind, that they prefer to live their lives wallowing in ignorance. It has less to do with religion, and more to do with human nature, my friend. Human beings will(and do) believe anything that’s been repeated enough times.

  • Bill Snoot

    You’re all going to hell for watching these blasphemous Hollywood abominations they call movies based on classic comic books

    • Gunner Miller

      How do I repent Brother Snoot? Help this poor soul.

    • a_narwhal

      You’re going to Hell for never having any fun.

    • Ashley Brooks

      How can any person judge another? Based upon the very fabric of what is called Christianity, doesn’t that very judgement call place you in a predicament that isn’t in very good taste?
      Plus, I’m not entirely sure that I follow the thought process here- in what way are comic-book based movies “blasphemous?” I would appreciate greatly a clear explanation that does not, as your earlier comment, Mr. Snoot, appear to oppose the very belief system that you claim to be protecting?
      I was born and raised a Christian, and I can tell you this- the gospels that I learned revolved around accepting others, having an open mind and an understanding heart, standing in holy places, and, above all, not judging others. I am simply wondering how the two of us appear to have two completely separate belief systems when we were taught from the same basic structure of belief that we refer to as Christianity.

  • http://news.mensactivism.org/ Jhon Deo

    Those guys sound like standard christian zealots. Annoying them doesn’t do anything. They just yell sexist, homophobic, and sex negative remarks back. If you really want to do something then you just need to round up a group of guys, quickly kick their teeth in, and get the hell out of there before the cops show up.

    If you’re afraid of getting caught and thrown in jail for a couple of days; grabbing some bear mace and tear gas, and macing the shit out of those guys is a decent alternative.

    • Jim Jones

      Find something that stinks so bad it would make a maggot gag, then stand upwind of them and ‘accidentally’ drop it. Oops.

  • Sebine

    Can the cameraman not take one decent fucking shot showing the goddamn signs?!

    Fucking seriously man, have someone else take pics if you’re too damn stupid.

    • okrra

      I agree, these are terrible fucking pictures.

  • Rune Norderhaug

    I was there that day but I did not notice them.i did see a separate group of religious protesters that was separate from the normal asshole protestor that were not about ruining your comiccon experience but about them joining their church.they were nice.mabye I missed the atheist cause I was watching the cosmos panel with Neil daGrase Tyson in the panel and bill nye in the audience.i did see some joke protesters with signs like Ned stark died for your sins and one that was a joke about pikachu and sinning or something

  • Paul Loebe

    These guys plan on making this an annual thing at every Comic Con. I hope I can show up next year.

    • Paul Loebe

      I would probably have to make time to join them in between my nerdgasming at the conference…

    • Rune Norderhaug

      If they have it in san Diego this year.They didnt even have tickets onsite sale this year.they didn’t even guys should come to gamercon as well if you like stuff like games.we had tabletop,some retro games like nes and genesis and we had computer and a geek theater and a rooftop lab. gam3ercon.com

  • Rune Norderhaug

    The religious people got a bigger place this year last year they were only like five people on the bridge screaming about heaven and hell.this year the asshole ones got bigger and got a bigger more obvious space they shared their space with some nicer guys that I mentioned in my other comment

  • heckboy

    “Jor-El So loved the world that he gave it his only begotten son. And he who speaks his name while in peril shall he be saved! ” -Olsen 3:16

    • JuniperJupiter

      WHO IS YOUR ZOD NOW!

  • https://twitter.com/Vestride Glen Cheney

    I would wear a shirt that said “Science Saves More Lives Than Jesus”

    • Eigetsu Yamori

      But Jesus himself put thoughts into minds of scientists to save lives!

      • Counter-Anon

        Ha, idiot.

        • Eigetsu Yamori

          ^^

          • Calixto Corrium

            Stupidity

      • Bryan Richards

        Poe’s law… no one can tell if you are genuine or sarcastic without at least a winky face.

      • a_narwhal

        Why do you have to take the credit and give it to Jesus like that?

    • Ashley Brooks

      That would be fantastic! And I could wear a shirt that says “I love my savior,” and neither of us would care what the other person has on their shirt, for the simple fact that we are both decent human beings who are capable of accepting that different systems of belief are a cultural necessity.
      Plus, who’s to say that one cannot believe in both science AND creationism? I find that it is perfectly plausible to accept that the universe is so profoundly complex that any number of systems could be at work.

      • Bryan Richards

        because science is at direct odds with creationism. the evidence shows us things that directly disagree with everything that creationism states.

        it isn’t plausible if you are logical and follow the evidence to rational conclusions.

  • Anonymous

    For the record, these people are a minority in the Christian faith. Bash them, not the religion as a whole.

    • Counter-Anon

      It doesn’t matter, religion as a whole is irrational and illogical.

    • Bryan Richards

      The majority of christians in the US also think the earth is 6-10k years old… christians as a whole don’t really need to be taken seriously ( that and their fairy tale is really boring to boot).

      • Ashley Brooks

        I think that we should throw aside these ridiculous labels and just look at each other as fellow human beings. That applies for those who refer demeaningly to Christians and those who sneer at Athiests alike. It’s absolutely ludicrous. Why do we need to fight over our creation stories? No matter how you believe it happened, it’ over now, and humanity has bigger fish to fry than fighting about who’s right.

        • Bryan Richards

          Because one view is based on evidence and reasoning and the other is based almost exclusively on logical fallacies. Bad thinking deserves correction and sometimes derision at the same time.

          It isn’t just about following the evidence to be correct, it is also about being able to think in ways that aren’t deeply flawed.

    • Anymou5

      No true Scotsman again? Come on…

    • Jim Jones

      > not the religion as a whole.

      Their religion is a hole.

  • Timothy Steele

    The entire affair is as pointless as any religious group could have ever dreamed up.

  • Ragnar Pendon

    Westboro most likely, as a Christian myself, i facedesk at everything they come up with

    • jasa

      unfortunately not. The website one of those guys have on his sign doesn’t have anything to do with westboro, and they wouldn’t put another website besides their own on it.Plus they talk much more about fags in there signs and depicted gay sex in them, and those few signs we saw didn’t have near enough xD.

      • Ragnar Pendon

        ah, then i would like to think that this guy is heavy on the Jack Chick tracts….. which makes being a regular in Cons very fitting, IMO

    • Paul Loebe

      It’s not Westboro, but they are a church that is rather radical.

  • Ashley Brooks

    There’s nothing wrong with having powerful beliefs until you start being a world-class jerk about it. If you think something is immoral, then DON’T DO IT. Don’t convince the world that they too need to accept your moral system. End of story. Think gay marriage is wrong? Then don’t get married to someone of the same sex. Think abortion is a sin? Then don’t get one. Think Comic Con is evil? Then DON’T GO.


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