The Center for Inquiry’s Ron Lindsay offers some constructive criticism for American Atheists and their latest billboards:
One problem I have with the wording on the billboards is that it doesn’t match up with what AA says they’re doing with the billboards. The stated purpose of the billboards is to show “the foolishness of mixing religion with politics.” However, the billboards don’t highlight any remark by a politician in which s/he tries to base public policy on a religious belief. The billboards do show a Mormon wearing sacred underwear and do reference the (minority) Mormon practice of baptizing the dead. But no Mormon politician says all Americans must wear sacred underwear or baptize the dead. The billboards also state that Christians promote hate and call it love. But no Christian politician says all Americans must promote hate and call it love. So where’s the mixing of religion with politics? One might be forgiven for thinking that it’s American Atheists who are, in this, instance mixing religion with politics.
The billboard message is essentially an attack on the absurdities and contradictions of Mormonism and Christianity. Fine. I don’t have a problem with that in principle, although I’d probably take a different approach, but why is this attack on religious beliefs being coupled with references to American politics and being placed on billboards in the city hosting the Democratic Convention? One could be forgiven for drawing the conclusion that AA is suggesting that religious individuals shouldn’t hold public office because their beliefs are not only unjustifiable but absurd.
You can read his full piece here.