Come Out of the Closet

That’s what a certain organization is trying to urge with this controversial billboard outside Lincoln Tunnel in New Jersey.

I’m all for “celebrating reason,” but picking on Santa Claus to make your point? Then again, the target audience appears to be

people who are secretive not only to their friends and family, but maybe even to themselves about [their atheism].

20 Responses to “Come Out of the Closet”

  1. bigcitylib says:

    Why not?  American kids grow up thinking that some fat guy towed by flying elk is going to bring them presents every year for basically doing nothing.  Meanwhile Chinese kids the same age are designing the next generation of solar panels.  No wonder America is falling behind.  Your myths are making you lazy, and the Santa one is worst of all.

  2. Keith Kloor says:

    Yikes. So China is eating our lunch on solar technology because American kids in believe in Santa? Would that include the tooth fairy and the penguins of Madagascar, too?

    BCL, I’m pretty sure that most kids figure out the whole Santa thing before they’re out of grade school.

  3. harrywr2 says:

    It would seem the atheists are deluded as to who is in the closet.
    Any military Chaplin will confirm, ‘There are no atheists in foxholes’.
     
     

  4. Huge Difference says:

    You know who believes in Santa Claus?
     
    Science Deniers.
     
    It’s a shame for their campaign that these atheists just are calling out the fascist science deniers funded by big Coca Cola and Bloomingdales, because I would bet that would help their campaign tremendously.

  5. Huge Difference says:

    Bad edit.  Too much tryptophan in the morning omelette and a crappy wireless keyboard.
     
    ou know who believes in Santa Claus?

    Science Deniers.

    It’s a shame for their campaign that these atheists are *not* calling out the fascist science deniers funded by big Coca Cola and Bloomingdales, because I would bet that would help their campaign tremendously.

    http://www.thecoca-colacompany.com/heritage/cokelore_santa.html

  6. Huge Difference says:

    “BCL, I’m pretty sure that most kids figure out the whole Santa thing before they’re out of grade school.”

    Unless we ram down their throats what to believe and what actions to take based on the current policy preferences of our finest government bureaucracies, Democracy itself is in danger.

  7. Hector M. says:

    There are no atheists in foxholes is a proposition still to be proved by scientific research. But if proved, it would just confirm that religious feelings come from fear and terror. We already know that. So what? Psychologically explaining the emergence of religion is a legitimate scientific concern, and may even show the psychological usefulness of religious beliefs (though that too needs demonstration), but it bears no relation to proving the validity of religious beliefs. Children may enjoy Santa as they enjoy cartoons on TV, but that does not prove that Donald Duck exists.

  8. Hector M. says:

    On the other hand, the billboard does not mention Santa Claus: it depicts the Holy Family in the manger, and the wisemen coming following the star, and states that we know it is a myth. I do not have an opinion on the wisdom of erecting such a board, but it is definitely not about Santa.

  9. Huge Difference says:

    Hey Keith, I am thrilled I am allowed to post anywhere on the net, much less your blog, but can you tell me why my comments are sometimes allowed to go through without moderation, and at others times they all get moderated?

  10. laursaurus says:

    Atheists are diety deniars!
    Just kidding (sort of).
     
    It’s a national holiday after all. Atheists ought to enjoy the celebration every bit as much as Independence Day. It’s my favorite time of the year. The billboards stating “Jesus is the Reason for the Season,” annoy me about equally. Everyone is entitled to feel a little joy during this the darkest, otherwise most depressing, time of year.
    I wish everyone a very Merry Christmas!!!
    PS. Despite my efforts my kids have all figured out who “Santa” really is. They still have plenty fun. So do I!

  11. Keith Kloor says:

    HD:

    It must be the comment software Gods that are playing with you, or the BS-detector plug-in that I installed.

  12. ‘Any military Chaplin will confirm, “˜There are no atheists in foxholes’.
     
    Yeah, chaplains, there’s an unbiased source. </me rolls eyes>
     
     
    Btw, I don’t see Santa Claus anywhere on the billboard shown in the link.   Nor any mention of closets.
     
     

  13. Keith Kloor says:

    Ok, ok, I was being glib about the Santa Claus. But to me, whether your a church-goer, or card-carrying devotee of Richard Dawkins, X-mas is all about Macy’s display windows, the tree in Rockefeller center, and stockings stuffers. I kid. But you get my point. It’s a fun, festive, commercial tradition that has little do with the myth that the billboard is addressing.

  14. Pascvaks says:

    I doubt these folks are atheists.  The sign would seem to put them in the anarchist category.  In the Bible of Anarchy there’s nothing like inciting a bloody riot, or instigating a war between two opposite factions while you stand in the middle and watch the fun.

  15. JohnB says:

    I will believe the staunch atheists are true to their beliefs the day they agree to work on the “religious” holidays without penalty rates.

    Taking the money and at the same time bagging the reason you get the extra dough can only be called …………. 🙂

  16. Steven Sullivan says:

    An atheist billboard over the Lincoln Tunnel entrance is going to *incite a riot* here?  Really?  LOL.  Pascvaks, this New Yorker thanks you for the funniest post of the day.
     
    JohnB has the second funniest one.  John, it’s called ‘capitalism’ — the market sets the wage.   And who knows, maybe some atheists plan donate their superstition bonus to charity.  Preferably secular ones.  ;>
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

  17. Jay M. says:

    John B. #16 – “I will believe the staunch atheists are true to their beliefs the day they agree to work on the “religious” holidays without penalty rates.”
    Fine, I’ll forgo paid holidays on Christmas and Easter when conservatives give up Labor Day, pacifists Memorial Day, and British ex-pats Independence Day. Btw, I’ve worked Christmas and Easter before for no extra pay – it’s a lot quieter and the computers run faster.
    I find militant atheists to be just as obnoxious as militant evangelicals – no more, no less. It’s the behavior, not the belief system, that’s the issue.
     

  18. Pascvaks says:

    Ref – Steven Sullivan Says:
    November 29th, 2010 at 5:43 pm

    ‘Oh Ye Of Little Faith’ — I’ll bet there’s more than a few New Yakkers who would be willing to take you and me and a million more just like us to the happy hunting grounds for little more than the assurance that we would burn in hell for eternity and they would rest in the arms of 40 virgins (or studs) for an equal amount of time.  Don’t laugh so hard, you’ll choke.  It only takes one disgruntled fanatic and a little c-4 to have a jihadist ‘riot’.  In my book the most dangerous folks are those who recruit or incite others.  This billboard is about inciting mayhem –though, as you point out, MOST New Yakkers will ignore the slur.

  19. The only riot is you, Pascvaks, with your dark  fantasies of Christian ‘jihadist’ being  ‘incited’  to mayhem in NYC.
     
    (I *assume* you mean christian ‘jihad’, because you can’t seriously think a Muslim will be mortally offended by a billboard telling  people that Baby Jebus wasn’t really the incarnation of god on Earth.)
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

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