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Campaign Raises over $10,000

We’re pleased to announce that our campaign has reached a remarkable fundraising milestone of $10,000.  Although we are still a long way from our eventual goal of $50,000, we are more optimistic than ever about keeping this campaign going for a while yet and using it to spark discussion about belief and non-belief.

Thank you to everyone that has supported our campaign so far, and, as always, stay tuned for more later this week.

On an unrelated note: sometime in the next two weeks (probably on a lazy Saturday) we will be moving the site over to a new host that should better cope with traffic spikes; there may be a small amount of downtime, so we apologize in advance.

7 comments June 1st, 2009

South Bend Transpo Ads Are Up

transpo-ads Hey everyone! Our ads in South Bend are now up! After a delay that was surrounded with much controversy, South Bend, Indiana residents will finally see this message on transit buses as part of the most recent advertising push by the Indiana Atheist Bus Campaign.

Originally, the ads were scheduled to coincide with President Obama’s appearance at Notre Dame’s commencement ceremony, but but were held up when the South Bend bus company, Transpo, claimed that the ad needed approval by a special board meeting. At their meeting, which took place after President Obama and the national press had left South Bend, the board acknowledged that Transpo had posted ads on buses from religious organizations in the past and thus they had no legal grounds to deny the atheist ads.

The ads are now on 20 of Transpo’s 48 buses, and they will remain posted for the next several weeks.

10 comments June 1st, 2009

Our Article in TIME Magazine

The other day TIME magazine published an article about the bus campaign. We’re certainly all pleased that our message and our intentions came through clearly, and that people are paying attention (we’re the 4th most-emailed article on time.com right now).

2 comments May 29th, 2009

CFI Indiana supports the campaign

cfiThe Center for Inquiry, a transnational organization promoting science, reason, and freedom of inquiry in all areas of human endeavor, has shown its support for the Indiana Atheist Bus Campaign.  The campaign would like to thank CFI, especially Reba Boyd Wooden at CFI Indiana, for their generous donation and endorsement of our goals and efforts.

If you are in Indianapolis, CFI has a wonderful center that you can visit in the canal walk area downtown.  They put on numerous events every month, with activities ranging in purpose from social, community-building nights to educational lectures and discussions.  One of the goals of the Indiana Atheist Bus Campaign is to get atheists involved in local community groups, and we encourage you to get involved with organizations like CFI who provide a great service to the secular community.

A message from Reba Boyd Wooden, Executive Director of CFI Indiana:

In my opinion, this is a great message to put out there.  Too many people think that you have to be religious to be a moral person.  They don’t know they have a choice.  They think that it is a given that there is a god, that everyone believes there is a god, and if you don’t believe in god you are a bad person.  We secular humanists know that is not true.  When I give talks to groups and when I talk with people who come into our center, I give them a copy of the Affirmations of Humanism.  The Common Moral Decencies cut across all cultures and religions.  Take away the theology and “god stuff” and that is what you have—those values that have been proven throughout the history of mankind to allow people to live in harmony, to respect each other, and to achieve their fullest potential as human beings.

When I am driving to and from CFI Indiana nearly every day from my home in Greenwood (about 10 miles), I pass numerous churches, some with signs that tell me that I will be “left behind” or “go to hell” if I do not believe the way they do, and a large billboard that says “Avoid Hell, Repent Today.”   So is it not controversial to post these religious signs, but controversial to post “You Can Be Good Without God”?

Again, thanks to the Center for Inquiry for their support.

10 comments May 24th, 2009

Next stop for the atheist bus: Chicago (UPDATED)

UPDATE: If you don’t believe we really have an ad this time, here’s a photo:

Chicago Bus Ad

The Indiana Atheist Bus Campaign is excited to announce its over-the-border expansion to neighboring Chicago, Illinois with the slogan “In the beginning, man created God” beginning May 18th.

Ad for Chicago

On May 11th we launched in South Bend, Indiana with “You can be good without God”, a slogan that challenges the notion that a good moral code requires supernatural direction and religion has a corner on morality. Our Chicago slogan espouses the idea that man created God as well as all religions, and encourages public and critical examination of the merits of religious belief.

The new slogan chosen for a Chicago was entirely paid for by a private donor to the organization.  All other donations received up to this point have gone towards ads in South Bend with the original slogan “You can be good without God.”

These two slogans are favored by different members of our organization, reflecting the fact that atheism is not an all-encompassing worldview or philosophy. Our members all do not believe in a god, but beyond that we have different ideas about how to approach this campaign. Some of us wish to promote a positive message about atheism, and encourage atheists to “come out” publicly with their beliefs. Others wish to tackle religious belief head-on with science and evidence-based approaches.

As we move onward with the campaign, we would like to hear what you think of the two slogans and the statements they make. We will soon be adding a poll to the site where you can vote on which slogan you prefer. In the meantime, add your comments, and stay tuned for photos of the Chicago ads on buses.

If you are a Chicagoan, we’d love to see your photos; please email them to us at contact@INatheistbus.org .  We can’t wait for this exciting new chapter in the Indiana Atheist Bus Campaign!

181 comments May 21st, 2009

TRANSPO board in South Bend has accepted our ads

We have a quick update for everyone: After a bit of hoopla in South Bend over the past week, we are happy to announce that TRANSPO, South Bend’s bus system, has accepted our ads saying “You can be good without god.” The Indiana Atheist Bus Campaign is delighted with the decision by TRANSPO, which celebrates America’s rich diversity of peoples and cultures and religions and extols America’s unique and long-standing dedication to freedom of expression as embodied the the First Amendment of our Constitution.

Our ads were supposed to go up last Monday, in time for President Barack Obama’s speech at Notre Dame, but the ads were delayed when TRANSPO decided to review the matter. The Indiana Atheist Bus Campaign had a contract with Burkhart stating the ads would be placed last Monday, May 11, or within a 5 day leeway period. As of today, because the ads are not yet up, that contract has been violated by Burkhart. You can read more about this in the latest South Bend Tribune article on the campaign. (Also, see more of our coverage on the Media page.)

The bus campaign is happy that a decision in favor of our ads has been made; however, there are details that must be worked out in relation to Burkhart’s breach of contract. We expect the message “You can be good without god” to be up and visible in South Bend shortly.

Here’s a video of WNDU coverage of the campaign:

Thank you all for your dedication to the campaign!

24 comments May 19th, 2009

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