The Freedom From Religion Foundation is debuting a new public relations campaign in Nashville, Tenn. An eye-catching magenta billboard featuring a Tennessee student just went up proclaiming, "This is what an atheist looks like" west of downtown Nashville on I-40 about a mile east of I-440.
Grace, a member of FFRF, won her place on the billboard by entering a submission in FFRF's "virtual billboard" online app, in which atheists, agnostics and other nonbelievers place their photo, a short statement, and name in what looks like a billboard.
"We announced that we would choose a winner or winners from those who participate, and Grace's statement, 'This is what an atheist looks like,' not only inspired the Nashville billboard, but one of FFRF's most popular T-shirts," said Annie Laurie Gaylor, FFRF co-president. "Many people have not knowingly met an atheist, and as a result negative myths and stereotypes proliferate. Freethought means using reason to analyze religious claims. There are so many religions all claiming to be the one true belief. An atheist simply believes in one less god than the typical Christian."
FFRF is showcasing its new "This is what an atheist looks like campaign" in Nashville preparatory to taking its myth-dispelling public endeavor around the nation. The campaign joins FFRF's "Out of the Closet" campaign, also featuring real atheists and agnostics giving freethought testimonials. FFRF's other billboards include "Imagine No Religion," "Beware of Dogma," "Sleep in on Sundays," "God & Government — a Dangerous Mix," and bus signs promoting secular founding fathers and provocative quotes by nonbelievers.
FFRF is a cosponsor of The Reason Rally, touted as America's largest gathering of nonbelievers, taking place on the National Mall Saturday. Richard Dawkins will be among the many speakers, who will also include FFRF's Gaylor and co-president Dan Barker, a former minister-turned-atheist and author of Losing Faith in Faith and Godless.