By the way, Fort Worth is a city of about a million people, and part of a larger metropolitan area that is about 7 million people strong.
Fort Worth is also in Texas, a famously conservative state.
And the banners were put up just before the 4th of July, when Fort Worth hosted the largest fireworks show in North Texas (and maybe all of Texas).
As a result, as hundreds of thousands of Texans headed to Fort Worth for the big 4th of July celebration…they saw the banners were flying high, reading: “In No God We Trust.”
Now, I don’t want to downplay the people who respected freedom of speech and didn’t take down the banners. There were several of them, and while we may disagree when it comes to religion, I’m glad we agree that the First Amendment means something.
There are several who want to run roughshod over the US Constitution.
And at least one of them did this:
They seem to have done it to at least six banners so far, and there were only four replacement banners. That would mean that at least two are permanently down, due to the work of people like Johnny David, as he stated in a recently deleted post (the Metroplex Atheists have a screenshot).
I, for one, don’t want these vandals to destroy our message.
I want the banners to stay up. I want more campaigns like this. I want a strong, vibrant atheist community in Fort Worth. And this takes brave people, fighting upstream, a lot of time, and money.
The banners obviously weren’t free; they cost about $4,000, no small feat for a relatively small local atheist group.
And they were time-consuming to put up – it took about 2 years of working with the powers that be in Fort Worth.
This hard work shouldn’t be discouraged by vandalism.
I want other atheist groups to be encouraged by these campaigns, not discouraged because they are afraid of the consequences.
Personally, I think an atheist group with this courage, foresight, and dedication should be supported. And I think that those who are vandalizing these posters should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
If you agree, and you want the Metroplex Atheists to be successful in this campaign and other endeavors, encourage them by donating here.
You can also show your support with an “In No God We Trust” T-Shirt, which can be purchased here (although the shirt is being sold through local YouTube channel Atheist Edge, the proceeds from selling the shirt will be donated to the Metroplex Atheists).
And the next time we do something that touches your godless heart, or these vandals are caught and punished, or another atheist group joins this campaign…you’ll have the satisfaction of having something to do with it.
Thanks for reading.
The atheist banners are part of a campaign to change the national motto from “In God We Trust” to “E Pluribus Unum.” The first event of the campaign is an educational seminar that will be held from 3PM to 5PM on July 14th, 2019 in the IRIS room at the Fort Worth Botanical Gardens located at 3220 Botanic Garden Blvd, Fort Worth, Texas. Speakers include Metroplex Atheist President Courtney Stewart and American Atheists Gulf Coast Regional Director Aron Ra.
For more on the purpose of the campaign and why I support it, read here.
Thanks to Jim Hall from Atheist Edge for contributing key information regarding the cost of the banners.