Atheist Buses Denying God's Existence Take to Streets
Posted on: 2009-01-07 15:37:23
Prof Dawkins,** the renowned evolutionary biologist and author of The God Delusion, said: "I wanted something stronger but with hindsight I think it's probably a good thing because it makes people think.
Organisers originally hoped to put the message on just a handful of London buses, as an antidote to posters put up by religious groups which they claimed were "threatening eternal damnation" to non-believers.
But after the campaign received high-profile support from the prominent atheist Prof Richard Dawkins and the British Humanist Association, the modest £5,500 target was met within minutes and more than £140,000 has now been donated since the launch in October.
Enough money has now been raised to place the message – "There's probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life" – on 200 bendy buses in the capital for a month, with the first ones taking to the streets .
A further 600 buses carrying the adverts will be seen by passengers and passers-by in cities across England, Wales and Scotland, from Aberdeen and Dundee to York, Coventry, Swansea and Bristol.
In addition, two large LCD screens bearing the atheist message have been placed in Oxford Street, central London, while 1,000 posters containing quotes from well-known non-believers will be placed on Underground trains for two weeks starting on Monday.
They feature lines doubting the existence of God, and celebrating the natural world, written by Albert Einstein, Katharine Hepburn, Douglas Adams and Emily Dickinson.
It is the first ever atheist advertising campaign to take place in Britain, and similar adverts are now also running on public transport in America and Spain.
Ariane Sherine, a writer who first thought of the atheist bus adverts, said: "You wait ages for an atheist bus, then 800 come along at once. I hope they will brighten people's days and make them smile on their way to work."
JTA, Published: 10/02/2007
A renowned atheist cited the "Jewish lobby" as a model for his campaign to promote atheism in the United States.
Richard Dawkins said he wanted to gain the same kind of influence as the Jewish lobby, saying it "monopolizes" U.S. foreign policy.
"When you think about how fantastically successful the Jewish lobby has been, though, in fact, they are less numerous I am told -- religious Jews anyway -- than atheists and [yet they] more or less monopolize American foreign policy as far as many people can see," Dawkins, a British evolutionary biologist who advocates atheism, told the Guardian newspaper. "So if atheists could achieve a small fraction of that influence, the world would be a better place."
Dawkins, an Oxford professor who wrote the best-seller "The God Delusion," told the Guardian that he wants to organize American atheists to counter the influence of religious groups.
"I think some sort of political organization is what they need," he said.