There's Probably A Better Atheist Bus Response
An alternative response to the atheist bus campaign, created with The Bus Slogan Generator
We shouldn't be too surprised to learn that Christian groups are planning to respond to the atheist bus campaign which we posted about back in October. They've been riled by the on-bus banner that reads "There's probably no god, so stop worrying and enjoy your life". Now, thanks to The Bus Slogan Generator, you can come up with your own versions...
Of course, history tells us that some people feel quite strongly about their religious beliefs - so strongly in fact that they need to impose their beliefs on others. Yes, we humans have been merrily slicing, dicing, mutilating, invading, pillaging, raping, torturing, enslaving our neighbouring tribes since time immemorial for the simple reason that they don't share our credos. How dare they believe the world is round / that there are less than six gods / that the world isn't supported by a gargantuan bearded chap! (Not forgetting that assorted godless communists and totalitarians have been equally savage and intolerant in dealing with anyone who disagreed or threatened their world view, Ed)
How has the Christian Party responded to this lighthearted squeak of opinion (the original atheist slogan's use of the word "probably" hardly qualifies it as the most inflammatory of statements) from the usually, let's face it, quiet and retiring atheists? What pithy slogan has been conjured up to capture the imagination of the world's ungodly? After, no doubt, much consideration it is: "There definitely is a god". Ah, bravo!
Oh dear, oh dear. Surely any person with a working brain, a functional use of language and just a mite of enthusiasm for his or her faith could do better than that? Well, fortunately - thanks to a nifty new online gadget The Bus Slogan Generator anyone can come up with their own bus-side theological message. Simply log on and devise your own bus slogans in the privacy of your own homes. For your own amusement. Not to actually post them on a bus or otherwise force them down the necks of our enemies - sorry, I meant fellow world dwellers. Like this:
Can you do better? Send in your efforts to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. the funniest / wittiest / best will be posted up in a follow-up post.
Surely Christian groups should be spending all of this money on fixing church roofs and buying some more candles?
This is how wars start.
The war between the Christians and the Atheists will be traced back to 2009, where the Christians started blowing up buses.
Let's be clear John Instruct...they should be spending their TAX FREE money on doing something worthwhile if they want to prove that they aren't just a wast of space...maybe that was an editorial remark...oh well.
Quiet and retiring athiests usually, ones like Dawkins and Hitchens with the media's ear, err...yeah.
If something really doesn't exist, spending money to tell people it doesn't seems... well... pointless. Give the cash to the poor. Same for the likely rubbish Christian response. Just saying.
Hurrah! A chance for everyone in Britain to flex their funny bone!
I'm actually slightly shocked at the tone you have taken on this piece. I'm used to you being snobby and self-righteous about design - I feel it's something I can happily look past because a) I'm interested in the work you 'critique' and b) the whole of the design industry is snobby and self-righteous, it practically runs on the stuff. However what's written here bears little relevance to advertising - you've thrown out the relevant information at the start and then gone ahead and weighed in with snide remarks. Well done. I hope you enjoy your momentary sense of superiority over the masses of religious idiots, all of whom clearly lack a 'working brain'.
I suppose I should point out that yes, I am a Christian. I would also like to point out that I had no problem with the British Humanist Association's campaign (if anything I thought it was a good way to provoke discourse on the subject, rather than doing the typically British thing and brushing it under the carpet) and was quite shocked at the various responses from groups such as Christian Voice. Yes, I do actually think the bus campaign response is pretty weak and yes, thank you for so diplomatically pointing out that they could have done better. My problem here is not with the campaigns, it's with the way that everyone seems to be taking this as an opportunity to take the piss. Don't get me wrong, trying to stop you from doing so would be as bad as me paying for a bus campaign stating that there DEFINITELY IS A GOD as a petty retaliation, but quite frankly Creative Review are not really in a place to be making such remarks, are you? It's not even the comments themselves (PART of the problem is that too many 'religious' people can't take a joke), it's the lack of respect that lies underneath. Can we keep the misinformed religious banter and mockery in the pub and the snobby elitist design commentary on the internet without mixing the two, please.
TL;DR - Show a bit of respect, even if you do think we're a bunch of idiots.
I totally agree with Dave on this one. I recently just started following the CR Blog and have been really enjoying the articles on The Designers Republic in particular.
I was also very surprised at the blatant offensive tone and stance taken in this post and it's quite disappointing.
It's obvious that you're opposed to being oppressed by "religious groups" shoving their views in your face, so you retaliate by doing likewise with underhanded snarky remarks.
But hey, I don't have a working brain.
Tis true. This article is extremely biased. Surely Creative Review's standpoint as a Titan in creative review... err.... ing is surely to allow freedom of expression? If atheists can express themselves through London's public transport, why can't believers? Yes it is as childish as the PC vs Mac campaigns but obviously going to be much closer to heart and likely to cause offense.
The irony is there is a COMMENTS section to this article for people to express their opinions on topics put before them. If one put opinions across to the public which are going to cause offense, it would be wrong not to accept that people are going to disagree with it and further voice their disagreements; And so they should.
dyslexic atheist one was pretty good. As an atheist (who unfortunately reside in a rather conservative country) its nice to see atheist overseas being more proactive, but a core part of me being an atheist is that i won't force my beliefs on anyone, unlike some religious nuts.
I just deleted a comment by mistake. I think it began "God your holier than though...." Please re-post. Thanks
I don't agree with Dave's post. Why should anyone respect the beliefs of the religious? What do they have over everyone else?
Um, Carina, you treat everyone with respect and remain civil. I think you missed the point of Dave's post, he wasn't asking for special treatment because he's "religious", nor was he implying that he has something that is over everyone else. He simply requested an unbiased respect that everyone deserves regardless of what they believe.
"it would be wrong not to accept that people are going to disagree with it and further voice their disagreements"
Jason, that is so true, if you are provoking people, you shouldn't be surprised that they are going to respond to it. There always seems to be this double standard to which Christians are judged, they really have no way of winning.
Apologies if the tone of Gavin's post offended some readers but his remarks ("Surely any person with a working brain, a functional use of language and just a mite of enthusiasm for his or her faith could do better than that?") were aimed specifically at the Christian Party's slogan (which, to judge by the Guardian post linked in the story seems to be having a counterproductive effect).
As for CR allowing self-expression (@Jason), that is precisely what Gavin is calling for by inviting readers to send in their own responses to the atheist bus campaign and even contributing some of his own using the Bus Slogan Generator.
Finally, this is a blog and, as such, I think it is appropriate that contributors may express their personal opinion at times.
I'm not saying you should agree with me and I'm certainly not saying I'm better than anyone else. I'm not even saying that people shouldn't ever disrespect 'religion' - what you say in your own homes and in comfortable environments with like minded people is none of my business. What I AM saying is that I don't think Creative Review should be so openly snide on a blog about design in the same way that I wouldn't expect a newspaper to make such comments.
But whatever, this is the internet, it's not like any of it is real. Jason Calacanis has some interesting thoughts about lack of empathy on the internet - http://calacanis.com/2009/01/29/we-live-in-public-and-the-end-of-empathy/
As with newspapers, surely part of the remit for a magazine is to provide a platform for a variety of opinions and viewpoints? Although most publications have a general editorial line, it does not necessarily follow that all contributions or conributors reflect the opinions of the publication itself (which is why they carry disclaimers to that effect). If you go to the site of any major newspaper, for example, you will find a range of opinions expressed, some of them diametrically opposed to one another. This is particularly the case on the web where stimulating debate is the goal of much writing.
Anyway, as I said above, apologies if offence was caused but the criticism was very much aimed at the response of the Christian Party rather than at any group in general.
No fair enough. I'm all for varieties of opinions, I was just surprised to see those opinions tainted with sarcasm and sardonicism. They're not needed to express an opinion.
Anyway, enough of this. I should know better than to get involved in something like this on the internet haha.
This is the problem with blogs...
I definitely appreciate the apology Patrick and yeah, this can go on forever.
I just want you to realize though, as Dave is trying to say, we don't have an issue about the differing opinions, it's the manner and attitude of how those opinions are expressed that we had a problem with.
Anyone can try shrug off any responsibility to what they say by chalking it to opinion. Express your opinion, go wild, but taking stabs at the same time isn't necessary and shouldn't really be excused.
Anyways, I'm over this ;P
"is there a dog?" - gold.
@ Dave, Daniel - I apologise for offending you - religion is a sensitive subject and that was definitely the main point of my blog post. I'm a Christian myself and feel very strongly, mainly embarrassed, frankly, by the Christian Party's response to the atheist bus campaign - with which, like you Dave, I had no problem. Any element of sarcasm or snide-iness detected in my post is simply the manifestation of my genuine disbelief / horror that a group of fellow Christians felt it was the right thing to do to respond to the Atheist bus campaign in this way. It comes across, at best, as pithy, at worst, as insecure and peurile, tit-for tat point scoring. In terms of the actual line "There definitely is a god" - it just doesn't stand up in the arena of public advertising. It's like Nike saying "we're definitely the best sports brand": It's woefully lame. The point of my post was to report the existence of the bus slogan generator online and to beg the question - should religious groups really feel a need to respond to to the original, harmless atheist bus campaign? Is this the right way to discuss these issues when people feel so strongly about their convictions? In my opinion it most certainly is not.
I think if you have a go at the online bus slogan generator, it may help you realise what a ridiculous situation the Christian Party seem to be encouraging by engaging in this bus-side tittle-tattle. Again, apologies if my original post caused offence.
I blame religion for this heated debate.
I just don't understand how people continue to cling to the idea of an invisible wizard in the sky. It's like we still live in caves and throw rocks at the moon or something.
The idea of God has unraveled in the face of science. Those who are still clinging to it will become more and more violent to try and keep their belief system intact.
But in the end, it must fail. Why? Simply put...there is no God, and no heaven, and whatever grace and forgiveness there is to be had on earth must come from within each and every one of us, every day. We have to save ourselves. We can't wait for salvation to be granted from something as unreal as the tooth fairy, the easter bunny, or Santa Claus. It's this line of thinking that will be the death of us all.
It's time to take responsibility for our own actions. It's time to stop blaming the wars we fight on our Gods and start accepting the truth: it is only us.
And what does that make us? If there WAS a God...are we worth saving?
Wouldn't it have been great to have parents like stace. That would have made my childhood alot of fun. No Santa Claus, no Easter Bunny and no Tooth Fairy. You sound like a really fun person.
I also like how all these atheists renounce everything religious yet are more than willing to participate in religious events like Christmas and Easter.
You know who's laughing hardest about this whole thing?
Let's be quite clear about this issue of Respect; the religious have been exploiting this nebulous concept and further foggying the notion as a means of defence. It is not simply the benign whining of insecurity but often the basis for attack (ie. Atheist Bus). Let us remember religious intolerance is scriptural mandate if not overtly practiced by all 'liberal' euro-Christians. On this very blog we see it in action: the religious crying worship wolf, the unnecessary apologies, the critical negation and the false sense of security that the religious will let us live life away from the sermon.
George Hargreaves as linked above writes "The Bible is clear that only a fool says 'There is no God' (Psalm 53)."
I'd also like to ask quite how and why I should respect someone who believes that dinosaur bones were buried by god in order to test our faith. You're right, that's a silly example. No one believes that! A virgin conception, giving life to the dead and a talking snake are all *much* more plausible.
Some issues are worth kicking against the pricks.
I'm a Christian, and I thought the humanist ads were a great tongue-in-cheek gesture. Too bad the more fundamental branches of the church didn't see the humour in it. It was devised by a comedian, let's remember.
Anyway, I don't find this post remotely offensive, and see nothing to apologise for.
For the record, I don't believe God hid dinosaur bones to test our faith either. Not sure where honest joe dug that one up.
"For the record, I don’t believe God hid dinosaur bones to test our faith either. Not sure where honest joe dug that one up." -- there's nothing like a Christian for evasive circumlocution.
"Some believe that dinosaurs are Satan's ponies, the monsterous horses ridden by the rebelling angels as they were driven out of heaven. That is the operating assumption among one renegade synod of the Lutheran church."
Part of God's purpose for creating the particular types of dinosaurs that become very large was surely to impress Man. Dinosaurs showed the great power of the Creator. No matter how big these creatures got, Adam knew God was always far greater. God designed every part of them, right down to the smallest cell. Even the largest dinosaur was like an obedient puppy in God's wise, powerful hands.
Each nuttier than the next, but no less than Lazarus or another bible loony tune.
I think honest joe is quite an angry person.
If this is what being an atheist does to you, perhaps he could benefit from letting God into his life!
I want to scud this blog in the eye.
Be careful Andrew, an eye for an eye and all that...
This is an interesting debate and I find it astonishing that George Hargreaves and "the Christian Party" (which i honestly didnt know existed) has taken an "i know you are but what am i" approach to the whole thing by saying, "these people are stupid to spend so much money on an advertising campaign, but when we do it it's fine."
As for religious sensitivity, in some cases it is taken too far, and banning or condemning adverts like this is a ridiculous reaction to someone publishing their opinion because they can. But as with any disagreement or conflict of views there is likely to be a certain level of hostility, but surely Christians can forgive or turn the other cheek, rather than resorting to the old testament for solutions? Is the next step to send plagues to the Humanist society?
And at the heart of it this debate is about design and it's affect on people, and responsibility, so isnt completely out of place on this blog.
@honest joe, you're mistaken in describing the views of christians based on the most fundamental views, its like saying that all muslims are extremist, its just not true.
Some atheists seem to have a weird idea about god, and some atheists seem quite religious about being an atheist.
I think the second to last picture sums it up for me...
"there's probably no reason to argue, I believe this, you believe that, so what, lets dance"
The Bible cannot explain evolution, and as far as i'm aware science cannot explain love, art & music! It seems only smarties have the answer! :-)
@Ed: Where have I implied that?
@IanC: Science does not claim to explain such things. The bible does. It is a matter of humility and rationality vs dogma and afflatus. The heart may have reason that reason doesn't understand, but it is no justification for mass relusion and the network of exploitation it has wound and still weaves.
@klara: rights have to be earned in the face of opposition.
correction to my last post, honest joe has all the answers!
Admitting to not having answers provokes an accusation that I consider I do. Mankind is comfortable with only so much truth.
"because I believe it/say it/my parents told me", is not an argument.
If you read "The God Delusion", you will also find out that Science does indeed have answers for the phenomena of "love, art & music".
I agree that this is all healthy debate (life would be thoroughly boring without it)
I found the campaign (Atheist side) highly refreshing. It confuses and amazes me when I meet people who seem perfectly intelligent, but who don't seem to twig that theres no proof that God exists/ed! I have politely challenged believers of different religions, and none, NONE of them have given(despite being decent people with confident and seemingly trustworthy/reliable explanations)me a profound answer which isn't fallicious (the word fallicious means with loose evidence as a grounding to their answer).
(I believe that) God does not exist, only the IDEA of him/her?/it. The Bible was writen by Journalists and are just stories. A deep interest/"belief" in football or cooking are more of an efficient and useful use of people's time as they are real and proven!
My sister once said, (while we were passing preachers in the street) - and I shall never forget it, that from her perspective, people who believe in God have an imaginary friend! Brilliant!
I have been to church with family whilst an atheist (midnight mass) and quite enjoyed the service and felt refreshed (almost "cleansed") when it was finished. But I thought about it and concluded that, it was down to the EXPERIENCE, the atmosphere of the church and fastinating inspiring passion that the priest conveyed.
I once had a friend who said that GOD was her best friend and she was so believeable and because I have an open mind I went to a service with her and ended up in a group who were going to cure the problems (eg. dodgy leg) that we had. I do infact have a dodgy leg but when it came to my turn i had come to to the complete conclusion that it was all a load of apsolute rubbish (I was almost scared by the all the wierdness) that I appologised and left!
[No offence intended by this message to religious parties, I'm a nice person (who used to go to church up to the age of 6!) and open to any explanations/perspectives that have SUBSTANCE, I believe if we don't express things like this then life would be less interesting!!]
Loving CR email bulletins by the way :-)
I do not agree that you have to respect people's beliefs. I respect people but not their beliefs - beliefs have caused wars and hatred. I do not respect a tribe whose belief it is that young woman be circumcised anymore than I do religion circumcising people's brains.
Enough is enough. THERE IS NO GOD, DEAL WITH IT.
I refuse to show any respect for religious beliefs, purely because they're insane.
There is no debate to be had.
It seems nonsensical that no-one has thought of fitting a loudspeaker to the inside of the bus, which booms out 'GOD, OR NO GOD, YOU DECIIIIIIIDE!'
Then you have to press your seat button, (like in 'Who Wants to be a Millionaire') and the results get counted up and (probably using wi-fi, uploaded to a central website). During this time, (and for no other reason than to further increase the tension), 'contestants' /passengers are informed that if bad traffic causes the bus to go under 30mph, the bus will explode, (like in Speed, the movie starring dizzy Sandra Bullock and wooden Keanu Reeves.
no eco themes?
try this one
No one in Europe ever thought the world was flat. The greeks had successfully and accurately measured the circumference of the world. Please stop spreading ignorance.
The silliest thing is that people are calling this an atheist campaign... the word "probably" shows that it's agnostic, not atheist.
It also shows that the people who wrote the campaign aren't completely convinced there isn't a God... Hmm I guess nobody has all the answers after all...
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