Humanists launch largest American advertising campaign critical of scripture

  • post Type / Members and partners
  • Date / 9 November 2010

The largest ever Humanist advertising campaign launches in the United States on November 9. It will include a spot on the prime time news show NBC Dateline on Friday, November 12, as well as other television adverts, that directly challenge Biblical morality and fundamentalist Christianity. The “Consider Humanism” campaign, sponsored by the American Humanist Association (AHA), will also include adverts in major national and regional newspapers and magazines. The adverts emphasize that Humanist values are consistent with mainstream America and that fundamentalist religion has no right to claim the moral high ground.

The AHA is a member of the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU), a global federation of more than 100 member organizations from 40 countries. Starting with the Atheist Bus Campaign launched by the British Humanist Association in 2008, IHEU member organizations in almost a dozen countries have run advertising campaigns on buses and billboards. The AHA’s new “Consider Humanism” Campaign is the largest Humanist advertising campaign yet.  

The advertisements juxtapose notable Humanist quotes with passages from religious texts, including the Old Testament, the New Testament and the Quran. The adverts then ask the audience to “Consider Humanism.”

To see images and videos of the ads and find more information about the campaign visit: http://www.considerhumanism.org

“Humanist values are mainstream American values, and this campaign will help many people realize that they are already Humanists and just did not know the term,” said Roy Speckhardt, executive director of the American Humanist Association. “Humanists believe in and value love, equality, peace, freedom and reason – values that are comparable to those of moderate and liberal religious people.”

The TV adverts will be shown on cable channels as well as NBC. Print adverts will appear in major newspapers, including USA Today, the Seattle Times, the Village Voice, the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the Independent Triangle, and the San Francisco Chronicle, and magazines, including Reason and The Progressive. Adverts will also appear on Metro trains in Washington, D.C., on billboards on I-95 near Philadelphia and in Moscow, Idaho, and on buses in select cities.

“We want to reach people in every corner of the U.S., from all walks of life, to raise the flag for Humanists and show others that they have more in common with us than with Biblical literalists,” said Speckhardt.

“It’s important that people recognize that a literal reading of religious texts is completely out of touch with mainstream America,” Speckhardt added. “Although religious texts can teach good lessons, they also advocate fear, intolerance, hate and ignorance. It’s time for all moderate people to stand up against conservative religion’s claim on a moral monopoly.”

All quotes from religious texts were checked by scripture scholars to ensure accuracy, context and proper translation.

The Stiefel Freethought Foundation was the primary sponsor of the Consider Humanism campaign with a $150,000 donation. Another $50,000 was raised from supporters of the American Humanist Association for the launch of this campaign, bringing the total ad buy to $200,000 so far.

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