Author Topic: Atheists to Unveil First Monument to Unbelief on Public Land  (Read 525 times)

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Offline HAL

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(RNS) -- After years of fights over religious monuments on public land, a county courthouse in northern Florida will soon be the home of the nation’s first monument to atheism on public property.

On June 29, the group American Atheists will unveil a 1,500-pound granite bench engraved with secular-themed quotations from Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin and its founder, Madalyn Murray O’Hair, among others, in front of the Bradford County Courthouse in Starke, Fla.

The New Jersey-based group, which has a membership of about 4,000 atheists, humanists and other non-believers, won the right to erect the monument in a settlement reached in March over a six-ton granite display of the Ten Commandments on the same property.

American Atheists sued Bradford County after the erection of that monument last year, claiming its place on the courthouse lawn represented a government endorsement of religion.

Both monuments were paid for by private money. Businessman Joe Anderson paid for the Ten Commandments monument through the Christian Men’s Fellowship, a local group, and the atheist monument was paid for by American Atheists with a grant from the Stiefel Freethought Foundation.

The dueling monuments illustrate an ongoing battle over public displays of religion across the country that have gone beyond the annual December dust-ups over creche displays on civic property. Just this year, there have been legal wranglings over Ten Commandment displays in Oklahoma, Pennsylvania and in another Florida county.

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 Some quotes from the Florida monument:

    “An atheist believes that a hospital should be built instead of a church. An atheist believes that a deed must be done instead of a prayer said. An atheist strives for involvement in life and not escape into death. He wants disease conquered, poverty banished, war eliminated.” – Madalyn Murray O’Hair

    “Question with boldness even the existence of a god; because, if there be one, he must more approve the homage of reason than that of blindfolded fear.” – Thomas Jefferson

    “It will never be pretended that any person employed in that service [writing the Constitution], had interviews with the gods, or were in any degree under the inspiration of Heaven.” – John Adams

    “Where a religion is good, I conceive it will support itself; and when it does not support itself, and God does not take care to support it so that its professors are obliged to call for help of the civil power, ‘tis a sign, I apprehend, of its being a bad one.”  – Benjamin Franklin

http://www.religiontoday.com/news/atheists-unveil-first-monument-unbelief-public-land.html

Offline Backspace

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Re: Atheists to Unveil First Monument to Unbelief on Public Land
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2013, 09:26:22 PM »
Fox News Tucker Carlson: Florida Atheist Monument 'Will Be Magnet for Graffiti'

http://videocafe.crooksandliars.com/david/tucker-carlson-florida-atheist-monument-will

Quote
"Sure it's legal, the question is, is it necessary?" Carlson asked Fox News contributor Father Jonathan Morris. "I thought atheists -- and atheism, of course, is a species of religion -- were against religious monuments on public property."

"You are right, I believe, Tucker, that it's silly," Morris opined. "Why do we have a Ten Commandments there at a federal courthouse? Because of the tradition of law and justice and truth being based also on religious revelation, revelation of what God's will is for us and how we behave."

You can always count on Fox News to be Fair and Balanced.  &)
« Last Edit: June 07, 2013, 09:28:20 PM by Backspace »
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Offline idontknow

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Re: Atheists to Unveil First Monument to Unbelief on Public Land
« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2013, 12:56:32 AM »
 “An atheist believes that a hospital should be built instead of a church. An atheist believes that a deed must be done instead of a prayer said. An atheist strives for involvement in life and not escape into death. He wants disease conquered, poverty banished, war eliminated.” – Madalyn Murray O’Hair

Weren't a lot of hospitals built by churches? And aren't most hospitals now built with public funds? We don't have public churches in this country with the possible exception of the National Cathedral. So I don't really get the usefulness of the rhetoric. She wants to tell other people how to spend their money?


    “Question with boldness even the existence of a god; because, if there be one, he must more approve the homage of reason than that of blindfolded fear.” – Thomas Jefferson

So TJ gets to tell other beings, if they exist, what they're allowed to think and approve of? That's weird.


    “It will never be pretended that any person employed in that service [writing the Constitution], had interviews with the gods, or were in any degree under the inspiration of Heaven.” – John Adams

Inspiration is a pretty big lightning rod for interpretation there. Does it mean more of a simple motivation? Does it mean more of an infallibility? My mom inspired me to go to grad school. She also, on previous occasions, has inspired me to do the dishes.


    “Where a religion is good, I conceive it will support itself; and when it does not support itself, and God does not take care to support it so that its professors are obliged to call for help of the civil power, ‘tis a sign, I apprehend, of its being a bad one.”  – Benjamin Franklin

Yeah. That's why a lot of Christians in this country scoff at the idea of public funds being used to support state churches in Europe that would otherwise die out. Each generation needs its own revival.
"Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved" - Acts 16:31 (NKJV)

"A page of history is worth a volume of logic." Oliver Wendell Holmes, New York Trust Co. v. Eisner, 256 U.S. 345, 349 (1921)

Offline Azdgari

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Re: Atheists to Unveil First Monument to Unbelief on Public Land
« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2013, 07:00:32 AM »
Weren't a lot of hospitals built by churches? And aren't most hospitals now built with public funds? We don't have public churches in this country with the possible exception of the National Cathedral. So I don't really get the usefulness of the rhetoric. She wants to tell other people how to spend their money?

Whoever said anything about public vs private money?  Human effort must be expended for either.  The quote is a statement of values.  And America is full of people who want to tell others how to spend their money.  It's called "Capitalism".  Didn't realize that was against the rules.

So TJ gets to tell other beings, if they exist, what they're allowed to think and approve of? That's weird.

Are you trying not to understand the quote here?  The "must" refers to expectation rather than imperative.  The statement, "Bill must be done making supper by now" doesn't mean that he's obligated to now done making supper, but that we should expect that he is.  That's how TJ is using the word "must".  He's saying "surely, we should expect that a real god would respect reason over fear".

Inspiration is a pretty big lightning rod for interpretation there. Does it mean more of a simple motivation? Does it mean more of an infallibility? My mom inspired me to go to grad school. She also, on previous occasions, has inspired me to do the dishes.

Presumably you'd encountered your mom before.  Which people involved with writing the U.S. constitution had encountered heaven before?  And anyway, shouldn't we defer to the statements of the people who were actually involved in writing the constitution when determining what inspired them?  They're kind of authorities on the subject.

Yeah. That's why a lot of Christians in this country scoff at the idea of public funds being used to support state churches in Europe that would otherwise die out. Each generation needs its own revival.

State funds to the official public churches in Europe, or state funds to the private churches in America...it differs only in the degree of honesty with which it is done, no?
I have not encountered any mechanical malfunctioning in my spirit.  It works every single time I need it to.

Offline Nick

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Re: Atheists to Unveil First Monument to Unbelief on Public Land
« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2013, 07:33:41 AM »
So was Tucker kind of calling for action against this thing?  When I 1st heard about this a few weeks back I thought it would not be long before it was defaced somehow...that is what Christians do who are working for their God.  I guess He is too busy to do it himself...He did seem to find time to strike that big ass Jesus at that one church with lightning and burn it to the ground a year or 2 back.  Kind of strange.
Yo, put that in your pipe and smoke it.  Quit ragging on my Lord.

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