As if millions of years of magical religious hegemony wasn’t proof enough, we have the latest evidence that atheism is doomed to a marginalized existence–lame bus signs all over Europe that say, “There’s probably no God. So stop worrying and enjoy your life.”
So many of those words suck. Let’s start with ‘probably’. The man credited with “launching” the campaign is none other than South Park-bait and professional atheist Richard Dawkins, who invested £5,500 in the sign and claims that he didn’t want the word ‘probably’ in the phrase. I agree with Dawkins. They should have lost ‘probably’. They should have gotten rid of all the other words too. The two sentences don’t even make sense together. If this is supposed to be the first salvo in some kind of dialogue with believers, it’s not a very convincing one. Any believer could easily point out that they’re not worried because they know there is a God and, as such, they’re having a dandy time.
It occurs to me that being an atheist is a lot like being a Democrat. Not a bad idea on paper, then you get a look at who your leaders are and it’s a bit hard to swallow. Even with a little bit of counter-intuitive explanation by the always calm Nate Silver, Harry Reid’s latest in a long series of cave-ins makes me want to scream. Not because I care if Roland Burris lands in the Senate, but because this operation can’t do anything right and they’re the only ones in the government that aren’t Republicans.
Atheists are even harder to organize than progressives, and the idea that they threw away £135,000 on bus signs is so sad. I get the joke that comedian Ariane Sherine was going for when she thought of this idea. We see inappropriate religious advertising on virtually every mile of American highway. Where there’s a billboard there you will find some self-righteous bullshit scrawled across it in Jesus’s name. So, yes, seeing an atheist message on a bus would probably make me smile. So put it on one or two buses and make it mean something. But if you have £135,000, do something with it. Feed some people. Start up a community center. Do some missionary work. Hell, buy a senate seat, give it Dawkins and have him swear in on Ken’s Guide to the Bible. But don’t blow the whole wad on a well-meant joke that wasn’t properly scripted.