"Imagine No Religion" Billboard Comes to California for the First Time

Posted in Rancho Cucamonga

The Freedom From Religion Foundation's national campaign to place nonreligious, irreverent billboards has come to California for the first time. The billboard just went up on Archibald Street, facing north, in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. The colorful billboard carries the Freedom From Religion Foundation's name and website, and boasts a John Lennon-esque statement, "Imagine No Religion," against a stained-glass window background. The billboard can be seen by those traveling east and west on Foothill Boulevard, which is part of the famous Route 66.

The Madison, Wis.-based Foundation, a state/church separation watchdog, which is also the nation's largest association of freethinkers (atheists, agnostics), has placed billboards in the past year in a number of states. Its billboards have gone up in Madison, Wis.; Columbus, Ohio; Atlanta, Ga.; Harrisburg, Penn., Chambersburg, Penn.; Denver, Colo., Phoenix, Ariz., and Seattle, Wash. An "Imagine No Religion" billboard popped up this month in Colorado Springs.

"I think we could have a 'heaven on earth' if people would stop investing their best energies in unprovable religious claims. The only afterlife that should concern us is a secure and pleasant future for our descendants," said Annie Laurie Gaylor, co-president of the Freedom From Religion Foundation.

Dan Barker, Foundation co-president and author of the new book, Godless: How an Evangelical Preacher Became One of America's Leading Atheists, said: "John Lennon got it right. No hell below us, nothing to kill or die for."

Barker, who grew up in Anaheim and lived in the Ontario and Cucamonga areas for many years, added: "There are many people in Southern California who reject religion. Isn't it time to balance all that religion on the roadside, and represent the nonreligious point of view–o that religion doesn't win the PR game by default?"

A Foundation billboard using the stained-glass motif and the seasonal message, "Reason's Greetings," will be going up next month in Olympia, Wash., and in Madison, Wis.

The Freedom From Religion Foundation, based in Madison, Wis., is a national association of freethinkers (atheists, agnostics) that has been working since 1978 to keep church and state separate.

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