Better late than never, here is my acknowledgment of the recent furore over a set of advertisements presented by British atheists for the edification of their friends and neighbours. My friends at the Telegraph told us last week:
"Organisers originally hoped to put the message on just a handful of London buses, as an antidote to posters put up by religious groups which they claimed were "threatening eternal damnation" to non-believers. But after the campaign received high-profile support from the prominent atheist Prof Richard Dawkins and the British Humanist Association, the modest £5,500 target was met within minutes and more than £140,000 has now been donated since the launch in October. Enough money has now been raised to place the message – "There's probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life" – on 200 bendy buses in the capital for a month, with the first ones taking to the streets . A further 600 buses carrying the adverts will be seen by passengers and passers-by in cities across England, Wales and Scotland, from Aberdeen and Dundee to York, Coventry, Swansea and Bristol. In addition, two large LCD screens bearing the atheist message have been placed in Oxford Street, central London, while 1,000 posters containing quotes from well-known non-believers will be placed on Underground trains for two weeks starting on Monday.
Some atheist supporters of the campaign were disappointed that the wording of the adverts did not declare categorically that God does not exist, although there were fears that this could break advertising guidelines. Prof Dawkins, the renowned evolutionary biologist and author of The God Delusion, said: "I wanted something stronger but with hindsight I think it's probably a good thing because it makes people think. It's just food for thought – people will have conversations in pubs when they see these buses.""
The whole article, and a vid, is here.
Follow-up note: the Advertising Standards Authority is being called upon to rule on the likelihood of God's existence after official complaints were made about the bus ads. Story here.