The War Over Christmas: American Atheists vs. The Catholic League

It wouldn’t be Christmas without a war between true believers and nonbelievers. This year, the American Atheists fired the first shot, dropping $20,000 to rent a 14-by-48-foot billboard on I-495 in New Jersey, en route to the Lincoln Tunnel, with the following message: “You KNOW it’s a myth. This season, celebrate reason!”

David Silverman, president of American Atheists, told the New York Times that the billboard serves two purposes: “The first was to get the many people who do not actually believe in God but practice religious rituals to ‘come out,’ in his words.” Second, he said, the billboard takes a stand against preemptive strikes on atheism: “Every year, atheists get blamed for having a war on Christmas, even if we don’t do anything,” he said. “This year, we decided to give the religious right a taste of what war on Christmas looks like.”

As planned, American Atheists’ billboard raised the ire of true believers, most notably the Catholic League, which struck back with a billboard of its own on the New York side of the Lincoln Tunnel: “You know it’s real. This season, celebrate Jesus.” And, not surprisingly, they also issued a statement: “Our approach is positive, and services the common good. Theirs is negative, and is designed to sow division. It’s what they do…So after Christian motorists have had their sensibilities assaulted as they exit New Jersey, they will experience a sense of joy, and satisfaction, as they enter New York City.”

American Atheists president David Silverman found the League’s billboard amusing, as he told “They stole our scene and copied what we’re doing, and that’s fine. Once again, the Catholic Church is co-opting something that isn’t theirs, just like they did to Christmas. It’s a great analogy, and I love it.” TC mark

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  • Joseph Ernest Harper

    the 'Catholic League' is a cool name.

  • Jordan

    Both sides have really ran with the holiday tradition of spending lots of money on pointless shit.

  • Jtprius510

    '21st Century feels so nice.'

    The idea of a war so frivolous, speaks volumes about this day. I hope this escalates into an 'all out' war that will either result in a movie similar to Doubt, or our first actual super hero.

  • Henry Elder

    Given their adoration of creative writing, the 'Christian League' is fucking awful at formulated retaliation.

  • Hyacinthe

    I love how these atheists seem to have embraced the principle of “pre-emptive douchebaggery.”

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