American Atheists place billboards that say Santa approves skipping church on Christmas, as long as you’re good.
American Atheists, a nonprofit, is urging children to skip church for Christmas through its billboards. In a press release, the organization stated that the billboards were erected in Colorado Springs, Colorado and Raleigh, North Carolina.
Each of the billboards carried an image of a happy Santa Claus giving permission to skip church and encouraging good behavior.
David Silverman of American Atheists said that his organization wanted the audience to know that the church has zero influence on making someone a good person. The things associated with the holiday season, like charity, being merry and spending quality time with the loved ones have no association with religion. Silverman holds the post of president in the organization.
— Zachary Moore (@drzach) December 8, 2015
American Atheists erected a billboard in 2014 which displayed a child writing the proverbial letter to Santa, informing him that she did not wish to visit the church. Silverman said that Santa wrote back this year, hence the billboards.
According to the American Atheists group, they want people to understand that going to church has zero effect on being good. Religion does not play any role in the matter of whether an individual is a good person or not. The billboards, American Atheists said, were erected with the intention of reaching the significant amount of people who occasionally continue to attend church services. These individuals have doubts concerning their religious beliefs.
Nick Fish, the national program director, American Atheists, said that it is vital for people who are in the midway of religion and atheism to know that it is possible to leave church belief and take a significant step towards atheism. He pointed out that atheists in the US are in tens of millions. There is no need for gods or a church to guide them on how to be a good individual. The billboards will stand until December end.
The message has garnered mixed reactions from those who see it. A few like Bonnie Miller of Colorado Springs regarded the message as terrible. She said although she knows that not everyone must take part in the church activities on that day, the message is not suitable for Christmas. An almost identical sentiment is shared by Vanessa Holdridge, who said that her family raised her as a Catholic and she was comfortable with the idea of being happy during the holidays. However, she stressed the need to keep Christ within Christmas.
— RP PAC ATC (@RPowersPA) December 9, 2015