Wednesday, 7 January 2009

the not quite atheist bus

The Atheist Bus Campaign finally got under way yesterday. For those who don't know, it is basically a series of adverts on City Buses saying 'There's probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life.' The campaign is the 'brainchild' of comedian Ariane Sherine, who I'd never heard of until reading about the project in The Guardian, and about £140,000 has been raised for the adverts.

Just a few brief comments about the project. It isn't really an Atheist Bus Campaign but more an agnostic bus campaign - the word probably being the issue and supporters of the campaign seem to disagree about whether it should have been included.

The campaign has had a massive amount of publicity, with numerous articles in the national media and a significant item on last nights BBC news, so I'm not sure why its supporters are so surprised at the amount of money they raised. The usual suspects have signed up including those dependable atheists A. C. Grayling, Polly Toynbee and Richard Dawkins. The report of the press launch which I saw yesterday showed a rather large heated tent with the three of them sitting in the front row and behind them quite a few empty seats. Dawkins did his piece to camera and The Guardian has posted a video of Toynbee interviewing Dawkins.

The problem for the campaigners is that their advert seems to have misfired. On the whole Christian organisations have welcomed the campaign because it gets people talking about God. As a representative from a Christian advertising network said on B.B.C. London News, the real concern for Christians is apathy.

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