Exposing Fundamentalism and
Considering the Humanism Alternative
The Ad Concept:
The American Humanist Association’s Consider Humanism campaign, the largest nontheist advertising campaign in history, is a series of advertisements that feature two “sections”—one devoted to quotes from religious texts, the other to humanist principles.
There are millions of Americans of strong moral character who don’t happen to believe in a god. Humanists have always understood that you don’t need a god to be a good person, but many other Americans have not, and that’s one reason we’ve been running ad campaigns in the past. This year, we’re going further in our attempt to challenge the intolerant view that atheist and agnostic humanists can’t be good without Bible derived morality. We’re taking a hard look at what is included in religious texts.
The first section of each ad displays one of several quotes from the New International Version Bible and a Qur’anic quote as well. A description accompanies each quote, naming the source of the quote. This section includes large-font text that reads, “What some believe.” The second section features contrasting quotes from humanist documents. These have been pulled from Humanism and Its Aspirations and from nontheist luminaries such as Katharine Hepburn and Richard Dawkins. This section includes large-font text that reads, “What humanists think” and “Consider Humanism.”
The Stiefel Freethought Foundation gave a generous $150,000 toward this campaign. A number of members of the American Humanist Association donated within the last month to help the campaign top the $200,000 mark. Please consider helping the campaign continue and expand.
The ads will be featured in major newspapers such as USA Today, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Seattle Times, the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the Village Voice, the Durham Herald Sun, the Arizona Republic and the Independent Triangle, and magazines such as the Progressive and Reason. The ads will also appear on buses and phone booths across Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco, inside the Washington DC metro and bus system, on billboards in Moscow, Idaho and Philadelphia, PA, as well websites such as the Friendly Atheist. Consider Humanism TV commercials will appear nationwide on NBC’s Dateline, and stations such as MSNBC, CNBC and Bloomberg Business Television.
Humanists Launch Largest National Advertising Campaign Critical of Religious Scripture
Speeches by: Roy Speckhardt, Executive Director of the American Humanist Association; Todd Stiefel, Member of the American Humanist Association Advisory Board and President of the Todd Stiefel Foundation; and Sara Ameigh, Communications and Policy Assistant for the American Humanist Association.
[ Read all speeches here ]
(Washington, D.C., November 9, 2010) A national multimedia ad campaign – the largest, most extensive ever by a godless organization – launches today and will include a spot on NBC Dateline on Friday, November 12, as well as other television ads, that directly challenge biblical morality and fundamentalist Christianity. The campaign, sponsored by the American Humanist Association, also features ads in major national and regional newspapers and magazines demonstrating that secular humanist values are consistent with mainstream America and that fundamentalist religion has no right to claim the moral high ground.
The ads juxtapose notable humanist quotes with passages from religious texts, including the Old Testament, the New Testament and the Quran. The ads then ask the audience to “Consider Humanism.” One example is the following pairing: The Bible: “A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent.” I Timothy 2 (New International Version) Humanism: “The rights of men and women should be equal and sacred—marriage should be a perfect partnership.” Robert G. Ingersoll, in a letter dated April 13, 1878. Another pairing is: The Bible: “The people of Samaria must bear their guilt, because they have rebelled against their God. They will fall by the sword; their little ones will be dashed to the ground, their pregnant women ripped open.” God, Hosea 13:16 (New International Version) Humanism: “I cannot imagine a God who rewards and punishes the objects of his creation, whose purposes are modeled after our own—a God, in short, who is but a reflection of human frailty.” Albert Einstein, column for The New York Times, Nov. 9, 1930.