Questions have been raised over an atheist group that claimed they were forced to take down religious billboards after receiving a large number "threats" regarding the signs' content.
The signs were placed by the American Atheists group, and brought into question both presidential candidates' religious beliefs. President Obama's Christian beliefs were reference by statements that said God was "sadistic" and Jesus was a "useless savior." The signs also accused Christianity of "promoting hate."
Mormonism was defined as a religion in which "God is a space alien" and beliefs include "big money,big bigotry."
The group removed the sign this week after reports of a "number of threats" were made via phone and email.
"It is with regret that we tell our members and all of those who treasure free speech and the separation of religion and government that American Atheists and Adams Outdoor Advertising have mutually agreed to remove the billboards immediately," Amanda Knief, American Atheists' managing director, said in a statement last week.
"We are saddened that by choosing to express our rights as atheists through questioning the religious beliefs of the men who want to be our president that our fellow citizens have responded with vitriol, threats and hate speech against our staff, volunteers and Adams Outdoor Advertising," she added.
But the group has come under the scrutiny of many, who charge them with hypocrisy, stating that the original billboards were "hateful."
"The only hate I see is what is coming from the billboards," Angie Batey said on The Christian Post blog. "Sad irony."
"I have learned to tune out much of the anti-Christian rhetoric that you see in the media today," Greg Teegarden added. "But I must admit, to call Jesus a useless Savior is about the most offensive thing I have heard."
Even atheists who responded to the article also suggested that the billboards were offensive and should have been removed for that reason.
"I am an atheist, but these billboards are in just plain bad taste," Vlad wrote on a CNN blog. "This is not even funny. I'm not sure what this atheist organization is trying to achieve by ridiculing other people[s] beliefs. I wish they take these down, apologize and seriously rethink their media activities."