“We’re atheists and we vote” is the bold message from Arkansans Chris Sweeny and Megan McGuire appearing on two billboards that have gone up this week in Little Rock as part of a national secular values voter campaign.
The provocative secular voter drive emphasizes that 75 million nonreligious adult Americans (nearly one-third of the population) are dedicated to the separation of state and religion — and are voting that way.
The campaign is timed around the 235th anniversary on Sept. 17 of the signing of the U.S. Constitution, which, the Freedom From Religion Foundation reminds Americans, is a godless document.
Sweeny and McGuire, who are married and are new parents, are pictured in front of their state Capitol on digital billboards at University Avenue near 12th Street and at 108 S. Rodney Parham Rd 250 feet south of Markham. They have even organized an event on Saturday, Sept. 17 (Constitution Day), in Bentonville involving a viewing of the original U.S. Constitution on display, to be followed by a march. Says Sweeny, “I don’t have a lot of ‘faith’ in our current Supreme Court justices nowadays, but I do have faith in our Constitution.”
In a full-page ad running in the Razorback State, McGuire and Sweeny note: “The ‘Nones’ (those of us unaffiliated with religion) are now 29 percent of the U.S. population. We are the largest ‘denomination’ by religious identification.”
They call for keeping religion out of government, social policy and public schools. Notably, given the overturning of Roe. v. Wade and increasing attacks on LGBTQ rights, their ad also demands that religion be kept “out of bedrooms, personal lives and health care decisions — including when or whether to have children, and whom to love or marry.”
FFRF, a state/church watchdog with more than 38,000 nonreligious members, is honoring the signing of the secular Constitution through a number of billboards and full-page ads in Sunday dailies across the nation. Read more about the national campaign.
Says FFRF Co-President Annie Laurie Gaylor, “We’re putting public candidates and officials on notice that secular voters are here, that WE are the true ‘values voters’ and that it’s time that our secular viewpoint be respected and represented.”
Gaylor calls attention to the growing and increasingly overt calls to Christian nationalism, and alarming Supreme Court trends to privilege religion and eviscerate individual rights for religious reasons. “That’s why our secular voices must be heard,” she concludes.
View FFRF’s secular vote billboards and bus signs around the country.
The Freedom From Religion Foundation has more than 38,000 members throughout North America, serves as a membership group for like-minded atheists, freethinkers and humanists, and works diligently as a state/church watchdog to uphold the constitutional principle of separation between state and church.