- (Photo: BackyardSkeptics.com)
ORANGE, Calif. – An atheist group continues to spread its anti-Christian, anti-religion message in the typically conservative communities of Orange County, Calif., by unveiling two more billboard signs mocking faith this week.
One of the billboards located in the city of Orange states, "Make this a better world. Reject all religious superstitions." Listed underneath the proclamation are 36 different references to Christianity, other religions, and cults. Included in the list are: "Talking Snakes," "Burning Bushes," "Resurrection," "Salvation," and "Sin."
Lumped in with the Christian references are "Voodoo," "Magic Underwear," "Astrology," and "Hand of Fatima."
A group calling themselves the "Backyard Skeptics" has garnered local, and in some cases nationwide, media attention recently with its atheist outreach events. Last week, the group's leader, Bruce Gleason tore apart photocopies of Bible verses that the group views as immoral and illegal at the Huntington Beach Pier.
At one point, Gleason ripped out a few pages from an actual Bible, appearing to play to the news photographers present.
Gleason told The Christian Post that he considers all the references to faiths on the billboard as superstitions.
"I'm lumping them together to make a point that all of the religionists in the world think that the other religionists' superstitions are silly except for theirs," Gleason said. "We (Backyard Skeptics) think that people harm others because of their religious superstitions. If the world did not have any of these superstitions it would absolutely be a better place."
Gleason gave examples of what he thought a "better world" would be by talking about social views contrary to what most Christians advocate or believe.
"You wouldn't have people withdrawing condom use from people in Africa," he said. "You wouldn't have people being anti-abortion because you wouldn't have people talking about a soul when an egg and sperm get together."
Although the billboards have been up for a few days, it appears there have been no complaints registered to city officials. The billboards are situated on busy streets lined with businesses and close to suburban neighborhoods. Orange County is generally considered one of the more politically and socially conservative areas in California. It is home to several churches with large congregations, including Saddleback Church, Calvary Chapel, and Mariners Church.
Another sign in Garden Grove simply reads, "Faith Has No Answers – It Only Impedes Questions." An image of hands holding a Bible through prison bars is also on the billboard.
"I'm hoping that 100 years from now, maybe less, another generation will be looking at us and saying, wow, we got rid of those religious superstitions," Gleason said.
Christian street preacher Greg Allen, who debated Gleason and members of his group at the atheist demonstration in Huntington Beach last week, said that "without God, it is impossible to differentiate between good and bad."
Later, when talking about the Backyard Skeptics, he added, "They misrepresent the Christian view and what the Bible is actually presenting."