Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Billboard poses question about God
to promote group’s launch, conference
“Don’t believe in God? Join the club.”
These words, superimposed over an image of a mountain sunrise, can be seen on a billboard in Lexington. And, like questions often do, the one now visible to westbound traffic on New Circle Road has sparked other questions – not the least of which is, what club?
The 10 1/2-foot-by-36-foot billboard, located at 2660 Wilhite Drive at the intersection of New Circle and Nicholasville roads, is part of a campaign announcing the public launch of the Bluegrass Coalition of Reason, a group “made up of atheist, freethought and humanist groups working together in the Lexington, Kentucky, area,” according to its website.
“Our twin goals are to foster a sense of community among the like minded and raise public awareness that people who don’t believe in a god or gods can be decent citizens who contribute to the larger society,” the site explains.
The new group placed the billboard with funding from the United Coalition of Reason, which is conducting a nationwide effort to reach out to non-theists. Since 2009, there have been similar billboards, bus ads and Internet ads in 33 states and the District of Columbia, including in Louisville in 2010.
“We hope people in the Lexington area will understand that we are a regular part of the community,” said Clay Maney, coordinator of Bluegrass group. “People like us live all over Kentucky. We’re your friends and neighbors, family members and coworkers. You might even find some of us in the pew next to you at church.”
Fred Edwords, national director of the United Coalition of Reason, echoed that sentiment.
“The point of our ongoing nationwide awareness campaign is to reach out to the millions of atheists and agnostics living in the United States,” Edwords said. “Such non-theists sometimes don’t realize there’s a community for them because they’re inundated with religious messages at every turn. We hope our effort will serve as a beacon and let them know they aren’t alone.”
The billboard, which will remain up through Oct. 8, is also part of a campaign to promote the first-ever Kentucky Freethought Convention Oct. 6 at the University of Kentucky.
For more information about the convention, which will feature a former minister and religious broadcaster, university professors, and freethought leaders, click here.
Information from United Coalition of Reason